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2017 Philadelphia Fringe Festival Review: ‘I, Peaseblossom’ by Curio Theatre Company at The Woodlands Cemetery

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I, Peaseblossom, written by Tim Crouch and directed by Dan Hodge, is a fun, magical way to become more familiar with Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

The dreams of the fairy Peaseblossom (Brian McCann) are filled with wondrous things: sleepy star-crossed Athenian lovers lost in a forest, his mistress Titania kissing an ass (donkey) named Bottom, ill-advised (in his unasked opinion) enchantments practiced by Puck on behalf of Oberon, a wedding, a play performed by tradesmen (panned by Peaseblossom), and other amazing visions!

Brian McCann. Photo courtesy FringeArts.

Brian McCann. Photo courtesy FringeArts.

Told from this fairy’s perspective, the events of A Midsummer Night’s Dream take on an added element of hilarity and insight. Imbued with improvisation, snappy asides, and various levels of audience participation, with some audience members being invited to don character costume pieces and possibly recite lines from Shakespeare’s script – and maybe perform the Chicken Dance – I, Peaseblossom makes for a lively evening of entertainment. The show is very family friendly, as McCann’s Peaseblossom has an excellent rapport with children of all ages, from toddlers to elders. Peaseblossom himself avows that he will never, ever grow up or give up his “Teddy.”

Colorful costuming, playful props, lighting, and marvelous music performed by Paul (Paul Kuhn), who also helps out by wearing other hats in the show, coalesce to create a most pleasant experience, and transform the setting into a spellbinding woods where anything might happen, as in a dream…

Running Time: Approximately 60 minutes, without intermission.

I, Peaseblossom plays through Sunday, September 17, 2017 at The Woodlands Cemetery – 4000 Woodland Avenue, in Philadelphia, PA. For tickets, call the Fringe box office at (215) 413-1318, or purchase them online.

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