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Creation Theatre Company - A Midsummer Night's Dream

28th June to 31st August 2002.

Creation Theatre Company revive their stilt-walking, fire-eating production, in Magdalen College School Grounds.

More details on Creation's web site at

Here's the review from the Newbury Weekly News.

Fairies at the bottom of the garden

'A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM', performed by Creation Theatre Company, in the grounds of Magdalen College School Gardens, Oxford, until August 31

Creation Theatre Company has revived its 2000 success 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' for its annual summer Shakespeare in Magdalen College School Gardens, Oxford. Located where the river splits into two, in one of the most beautiful locations for outdoor theatre in the country, director Zoe Seaton's production weaves its powerful spell on the audience, no matter how wet the weather. Magical effects devised by Paul McEneaney, a company regular like many of the cast, create intricate and beautiful moments, especially as the sun begins to set after the interval.

Those familiar with Creation's style expect an entertaining and accessible approach to Shakespeare. Seaton does not disappoint with a mixture of modern dress and period costume (designed by Lucille Acevedo-Jones), tumbling and circus skills from many in the cast, and a cheerful irreverence which used to be the hallmark of Michael Bogdanov's Shakespeare productions for the ESC and Young Vic.

Most of the cast of eight double up, with the exception of Damian Davis whose Puck, with his punk-blond hair and bovver boots, made him a natural for a rumble in the jungle. Davis, and Darren Ormandy (Bottom) return to their roles and both are drivers of much of the comedy.

The story of two couples lost in the woods straddles a fine line between comedy and tragedy. The lovers, Lysander (Paul Chesterton) and Demetrius (Jamie Bower) who are the recipients of a rare love potion, Helena (Ava Burton), the piqued object of desire, and Hermia (Elaine Postill), the jilted beauty, all could end up tragic victims.

Instead, Shakespeare focuses on the comedy which is initiated when Puck gets confused over instructions from his master Oberon (Richard Stacey, a sly, bold performance). The fights and quarrels between the quartet are marvellously choreographed and very funny indeed.

Equally riotous are the antics of the amateur players, The Rude Mechanicals, with their rehearsals and subsequent inept performance of Pyramus and Thisbe. Bottom's transformation into a floppy-eared ass and his brief relationship with the sexy Titania (lmogen Butler-Cole again) provide many opportunities for illusions and special effects. A choice spectacle on a summer's evening.


and there's another review at