The Seussification of A Midsummer Night's Dream

The Seussification of a Midsummer Night's Dream sees an all female cast embark on a speedy but delightful adaptation of Shakespeare's comedy. Not only have they altered the language so that it will be easier for kids to understand, they have done so in Dr Seuss style rhyming which makes for fun listening.

A great and colourful twist on the classic, both in language and in costumes. It's a fun and silly show great for a child's introduction to Shakespeare.

Narration is shared between the characters throughout the play but confusion is effectively avoided with Narrator 1 and Narrator 2 badges, which were a nice reference to Seuss' famous Thing 1 and Thing 2 Characters. The costumes on the whole are very colourful and in particular the hip hop personas of the Fairy King Oberon and Queen and Titania were amusing. Bottom was portrayed as slightly dim but egotistical as usual, and the kids in particular loved his dramatic deaths and acting. There was effective use of many entrances and exits around the stage and this proved particularly amusing in the chase scenes between the lovers.

Another change from the traditional Shakespearean play was that, instead of giving Bottom the head of a donkey or 'ass', he was enchanted literally with a bottom on top of his head. This was a silly and amusing addition for the children but an ass head as Shakespeare used would have been just as effective particularly because it wasn't entirely clear that it was a bottom on his head despite several puns to indicate this.

The play within the play, Thisbe and Pyramus, was the best and most hilarious rendition I've seen. The Wall in particular was portrayed very comically, talking over the dramatic stage stealing Bottom as Pyramus.

The audience was full of both adults and children and saw praise at the end from both, however the flat, face on set-up unfortunately meant that the children beside me had to crane their necks and stand on their toes to see over the heads.

The play ended with a very satisfied round of applause. This was quickly followed by the cast surprising the audience with a few speedy slapstick sequences. These brought just as much if not more laughter than the primary rendition and ensured the show went out with a bang.

A great and colourful twist on the classic, both in language and in costumes. It's a fun and silly show great for a child's introduction to Shakespeare.

Reviews by Kayleigh Blair

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The Blurb

'As comedies go, Midsummer’s the greatest! Except that the language Will used ain’t the latest. Shaky used old words like: Thee, Thou and Thine. It’s hard to process that much old at one time. So we ran the script through the Script Squash Two-Fifty. It’s a machine that makes old scripts more nifty. It tightens the plot, which is kinda gigantic. The whole play rhymes now and is much less iambic!' The Bard’s most beloved comedy gets the full Seuss treatment in this playful adaptation. A hilariously funny show for all ages!