A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Our “Free Shakespeare in Zilker Park” returns to offer the famous romantic comedy Dream of a summer night for four weekends from May 4 to May 29, 2022.

Made possible in conjunction with the City of Austin’s Parks and Recreation Department, this colorful outdoor story of young lovers driven mad by fairies’ DIY is a family favorite.

“We’re thrilled to bring ‘Austintatious’ creativity to what has been hailed as Shakespeare’s ‘perfect comedy’ with some of Austin’s finest professional actors playing lovers, fairies and comics, with a mix of pop music by LB Bartholomee.”
− Ann Ciccolella, artistic director of Austin Shakespeare

In this, one of Shakespeare’s best-loved romantic comedies, we find bewitched lovers Lysander and Demetrius (Dane Parker and Max Green) spending a feverish night of love, desire and confusion chasing (or being chased!) through the Forest of Magical Creatures by their beloveds, Hermia and Helena (Eliza Renner and Helyn Rain Messenger).

As they’re twisted in their own tumultuous love affair, we’re also greeted by glorious fairy queen, Titania, (Kate Glasheen*) as she’s “charmed” to fall in love with the dagger-headed Bottom. magically transformed donkey (Gwendolyn Kelso*) by her own husband Oberon, the powerful and jealous Fairy King (Gabriel Diehl), aided by his mischievous henchman, Puck (Henry DelBello). Our winged fairies complete the courtship of Queen Peaseblossom (Amani Alexander) and Cobweb (Danielle Kaigler).

the Zaner the comics in this room are known as “the mechanics”. . . their members being Quince, the worker/director of the strange play (Bennie Braswell); Snug the Lion’s part (Ramos River); Muzzle/Wall (Trace Turner); Flute/Thisby (Coltrane Conklin); and Starveling/Moonshine (Meg Hobgood). They are all joined by the hilarious Bottom as they strive to entertain the land’s deadly king and queen, the legendary hero Theseus (Charles Gross) and his queen of conquest Hippolyta (Emily Green). Rounding out this cast of characters from the mortal court is Egeus, the energetic father of Demetrius (Milaka Falk) who inspires our young lovers to flee into the forest in the dead of night to find their fate forever entwined in the love and desire. . . plus some fairy magic!

Shakespeare’s most popular play has lighting and sets by our resident lighting designer, Patrick W. Anthony, and colorful costumes designed by Aaron Kubacak.

“Costume design for mid summer embraces whimsy and incorporates lush jewel-toned fabrics, botanical elements and magical fairies with light-up headpieces. Its contemporary style has delicious steampunk and genre game hits.
− Aaron Kubacak, costume designer, Dream of a summer night

*Member of Actors’ Equity

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