Tonight marks the final theatre performance on our schedule for London as Visual Text with Steven. This performance of Midsummer Night’s Dream is different from the previous one we attended at the Barbican Theatre (read here). The cast is 100% male, and I was really looking forward to seeing how the male actors would portray their female characters.
The performance was at the Rose Theatre in Kingston, so we had to take a trip on the tube. Since Kingston is outside of Zone 1-2, we were all told to top up beforehand – luckily I remembered to do so, because there was quite a crowd waiting by the ticket counter! The Rose Theatre had a cafe/bar area, and while waiting for the theatre to open I decided to sit and enjoy the Open Mike night. Some of the performers were amazing singers, others not so much.
The set up of the stage was really interesting – there were a lot of chairs placed half-way between the floor and the ceiling, for characters to crawl across or sit and hide during certain scenes. During the break I decided to buy one of the cups of ice cream being sold outside: I chose English Strawberry because I tried this brand before, and the Chocolate flavor was a bit nutty for my taste.
The secondary cast (and the actor portraying Puck) went outside and began to sing for the audience, who were queueing outside for either the bathroom or for ice cream. They were really funny and engaging, and when the final curtain call rang, they walked down one by one and high-fived people standing by the corridor – I was able to get a high-five from all of them, which was great!
The performance was definitely my favorite between the two Midsummers we had seen during the program: the hilarity was more satirical and witty and less vulgar 12-year old boy, slapstick humor. I was sad to see it end, and the only part of my night that was ruined was when the middle school students behind me began playing with rubber bands. They refused to stop until one of the rubber bands hit me, and I turned around to give it to their useless teacher who wasn’t even paying attention – that got them in trouble, which they deserved!
The trip back home was fun, and it was really weird to see a nearly empty train. We definitely took advantage though, and sat on different sides of one of the carts – who knows when we’ll next have the chance?