A fresh take on Shakespeare

Credit: Nirox

The production has just ended its run at the Joburg Fringe Theatre.

This Saturday, March 16, the amphitheatre at the Nirox sculpture park will host a production of Shakespeare’s classic comedy A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Performed by the National School of the Arts, the play is, according to performer Brenda Sakellarides, “a wonderfully contemporary local interpretation which gives credence to Ben Jonson’s quote that Shakespeare was not of an age but for all times”.

Set alongside a stream and under tall trees, the amphitheatre is the perfect environment for this magical play and its numerous mythical characters. Other than the fact that the surroundings will now make up the set and lighting will be unnecessary, the play will largely be the same one that ran at the Joburg Theatre’s Fringe venue this month.

“This 2019 adaptation finds the heartbeat of our youth. During the NSA Festival of the Arts, they laughed and delighted in the text. They found the contemporary relevance and I am sure that the grounded response from the audience was the response that Shakespeare would have approved of,” explains Sakellarides.

Apart from Midsummer Night’s Dream, which forms the grand finale, the day at Nirox will also include a series of readings of Shakespeare’s sonnets as well as selections taken from a combination of Shakespeare’s tragedies and comedies and a physical theatre performance entitled Walking Tall, which aims to take viewers on a 13.8-billion-year journey through time.

“If Shakespeare failed to delight them at school, it is time to change that perception! This is an hour and a half of Midsummer Night’s Dream. It is accessible and contemporary,” says Sakellarides.

Tickets are R200 online and R250 at the entrance on the day, while pensioners and students with cards will pay R150 at the entrance on the day. Children under 12 enter free of charge. Head here to buy tickets.

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