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Capital Fringe Review: ‘Nevermind the Bollocks, Here’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ by Erica Laxson

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The Capital Fringe offers local artists the opportunity to practice their craft and bring unique visions to life. Nevermind the Bollocks, Here’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream is an off the wall, punk rock retelling of a Shakespeare classic as performed by some of Virginia’s best high school age actors. Music and creative costumes by Leila Spolter, James Madison, and Lia Ferro rule the show, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the professional essence of the small budget show.

Puck (Henry Ragan, University of Evansville) and Bottom (Stephen Kime, Local Actor and Yorktown HS Alumn) stole the show with their outrageous caricatures and spot on brit-rock accents. The loving foursome of Hermia (JuIia Barton, McLean HS), Helena (Amelia Boyle, Yorktown HS), Lysander (David Reich, HB Woodlawn Secondary) and Demetrius (Jose Rodriguez, Wakefield HS) are entertaining, energetic and simply excellent and their chemistry is hilariously authentic.

Titania (Ellie Berlyn, William and Mary), Egeus (Sinclair Cabocel, Yorktown HS), Oberon (Henry Ross, Mary Washington University), Peter Quince (Luke Withycombe, Yorktown HS), Faery (Becby Coppa, Yorktown HS), and Faery (Maggie Bussard, Oberlin College) round out the rest of Shakespeare’s skinny jean clad characters. From colorful costumes to rock themed attitudes, this is group of teenagers to keep your eye on.

Band members Snug Maxwell Denney, (Shenandoah Conservatory, Guitar), Snout Spencer (Calvert, University of Memphis, Drums), Starveling Neil Walters, (VCU-Arts, Bass, Flute) and Patrick Denney, (UC-Santa Cruz, Vocals) propel the show from scene to scene, removing the boredom some Shakespeare productions fall prey to. At moments, the music overpowered the actors and we struggled to understand what they were so eloquently saying. Kime, as lead singer, transforms some of Shakespeare’s most well known lines into some surprisingly believable punk rock ballads that are sure to keep you wide awake.

Directors Patrick Denney and Paul Gulley have captured a spectacular world in their simple, black box set, making the most of their actors to present a spectacular play.

Theaters goers looking for something new and exciting and die-hard Shakespeare fans must see this show!

For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.

 

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