Sunday, 12 June 2016

We cannot fight for love, as men may do

And so to the theatre. It was Shakespeare's Globe for my second Midsummer Night's Dream in a few weeks. This production featured many of the tropes familiar to anyone who has been to Bankside: music, dancing, humour, the noise helicopters flying along the river, and freezing cold weather whatever the time of year. The production has been controversial, but I thought it was perfectly OK.

One of the changes introduced was that Helena became Helenus and a gay/bi subtext introduced. However, other than a joke when Snug warns the ladies "and you gays" not to be frightened because he (or in this case she) is not a real lion, the characters' gender was no more relevant than their ethnicity. More relevant was the decision to make Puck female, as the character often seems to be these days, because her performance was accompanied by a series of pelvic thrusts that would have been somewhat less acceptable if made by a man.

 The mechanicals were portrayed as the staff of the Globe - which made for some amusing interaction with the audience before the play proper started - and I rather liked Starveling appearing in the final act as a fully suited astronaut, being, as she pointed out, the man on the moon rather than the man in the moon. I wasn't so bothered about the breakdancing of Pyramus; from my perch in the upper gallery it didn't look terribly proficient.

Anyway, all in all I had a good time, and I continue to very much enjoy the Globe despite the low temperatures that seem to be booked in for my visits.

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