Stage 2: A Midsummer Night’s Dream 2020

Student Matinee Performances: April 2-3, 6-10, 2019 | Public Performance: April 3 at 7pm

The Strand Theatre, 543 Columbia Road, Boston

By William Shakespeare

Directed by Bryn Boice

‘The course of true love never did run smooth.’

A Midsummer Night’s Dream is one of Shakespeare’s most fanciful and enchanting comedies telling the tale of four bewitched lovers as they reckon with jealousy, desperation, and the complications of true love.  This year, Stage2 takes up residence at the Strand Theater, one of Boston’s hidden jewels, serving as a cultural and educational resource for all.

About Student Matinees

Student matinee performances will be held the following days/times. To inquire about booking or for any questions about student performances, please contact Natasha Cole at 781-239-5693 or at ncole@commshakes.org 

Thursday, April 2, 2020 at 10 A.M.
Friday, April 3, 2020 at 11 A.M.
Monday, April 6, 2020 at 10 A.M.
Tuesday, April 7, 2020 at 10 A.M.
Wednesday, April 8, 2020 at 10 A.M
Thursday, April 9, 2020 at 10 A.M.
Friday, April 10, 2020 at 11 A.M.

$12 per person (student or chaperone)
School groups also have the option of staying for a free post-show talk-back with the actors.

There will also be one performance open to the public on Friday, April, 3 at 7pm.

Who is A Midsummer Night’s Dream appropriate for?

Stage2 productions are presented using Shakespeare’s original text, cut for length to approximately under 2 hours without intermission. Our cuts focus on highlighting the themes, ideas and language that will resonate strongly for a student audience. Our creative team and performers make choices that serve to illuminate the storytelling for this audience without “watering down” the source material. School groups have the option of staying for a short post-show talk-back with the actors.

This year’s Stage2 production is created with a 8th through 12th grade curriculum/audience in mind. A Midsummer Night’s Dream is one of Shakespeare’s most accessible comedies, touching on themes of jealousy, unrequited (or mistaken!) love, grand interference by the fairy kingdom, and finding confidence, maturity and personal agency. We do encourage educators and/or parents to read the play being presented and make the best choice for their students of any age. We recommend discussing the play with your students before and after you view our production. Please use the information and graphic below to gain a better idea of what to expect from this year’s play and let us know if you have specific questions about content.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

About CSC2

John Hardin (Mercutio) in Romeo & Juliet, CSC2, 2019-Photo by Nile Hawver

Commonwealth Shakespeare Company’s Stage2 Performance Series provides the opportunity for students and their teachers to attend high-quality live theater created with them in mind. These abridged productions use Shakespeare’s original text, and focus on the themes and stories that will resonate most with young audiences. Performed by our young professional CSC2 Acting Company, these performances bring together the next generation of actors with the next generation theater goers.

CSC2 is a company of young actors that works with Commonwealth Shakespeare Company to further develop skills in classical acting through performance, artistic and professional development, and through different educational and coaching settings.  The ensemble is built of twelve, non-Equity, early-career actors with some professional experience. 

Creative Team

Bryn Boice
Director
Bryn Boice
Director

Bryn Boice is a freelance director working in Boston and New York, and is the artistic director of the Boston-based ensemble Anthem Theatre Company, now a Resident Performing Arts Company at Boston Center for the Arts. Recent area directing credits include the lauded all-female production of Julius Caesar for Actors’ Shakespeare Project (Elliot Norton Award Nominations for Outstanding Supporting Actress for Marianna Bassham and Bobbie Steinbach and IRNE Award nomination for Bassham); the Boston premiere of Red Velvet by Lolita Chakrabarti; Henry VI part II and Henry IV part I for Commonwealth Shakespeare Company’s Apprentice Program; and Associate Artistic Director of WGBH’s A Christmas Celtic Sojourn 2017, starring Boston radio legend Brian O’Donovan. Recent work produced and directed for Anthem includes: her devised protest play, I, SnowflakeTwelfth Night of the Living DeadRomeo VS. Juliet; and her original Irish play with song, The Merry Way. New York and regional credits as actor and/or director include work with Asolo Repertory Company, Boston Playwrights’ Theater, Theatre Row, InProximity Theatre Company, Rebellious Subjects, Monomoy Theatre, Caroline’s on Broadway, and Manhattan Theatre Club. Bryn holds an MFA in Directing from Boston University and an MFA in Acting from the Asolo Conservatory for Actor Training (FSU). She is a Lecturer at Salem State University in Voice for the Actor, Directing, and Dramatic Criticism, among others. www.brynboice.com

William Shakespeare
Playwright

William Shakespeare was a renowned English poet, playwright, and actor born in 1564, in Stratford-upon-Avon. His birthday is most commonly celebrated on 23 April, which is also believed to be the date on which he died in 1616. Shakespeare was a prolific writer during the Elizabethan and Jacobean ages of British theatre (sometimes referred to as the English Renaissance or the Early Modern Period). Shakespeare’s plays are perhaps his most enduring legacy, but they are not the only things he wrote. Shakespeare’s poetry has also remained popular to this day.

Shakespeare’s work includes 38 plays, 2 narrative poems, a collection of 154 sonnets, and other poems as well. No original manuscripts of Shakespeare’s plays are known to exist today, and about half of Shakespeare’s plays are only available to us because a group of actors in his company collected them for publication after his death. These writings were brought together in what is known as the First Folio (‘Folio’ refers to the size of the paper used). It contained 36 of his plays, and none of his poetry. Shakespeare’s legacy is as rich and diverse as his work; his plays have spawned countless adaptations across multiple genres and cultures, and his plays have had an enduring presence on stage and film.

His writings have been compiled in various iterations of The Complete Works of William Shakespeare by different entities, which usually include all of his plays, his sonnets, and his other poems. From Stratford to London and beyond, William Shakespeare was and is one of the most important literary figures of the English language.

 

Strand Theatre
543 Columbia Road
Boston, MA 02125

The view from the stage out across the 1,400 seats of The Strand Theatre. (Robin Lubbock/WBUR)

 

Driving Directions to The Strand Theatre

From South: Take I-93 North to exit 15, Columbia Road. Left at the bottom of ramp to third set of lights.There is a Kentucky Fried Chicken / Tedeschi’s on the corner. Turn left onto Columbia Road. Go through two sets of lights, the Strand is on the left, just past Bank of America.

From North: Take I-93 South to exit 15, Columbia Road. Right at the bottom of ramp to third set of lights. There is a Kentucky Fried Chicken / Tedeschi’s  on the corner. Turn left onto Columbia Road. Go through two sets of lights, the Strand is on the left, just past Bank of America.

From West: Mass Pike (I-90) east into Boston, to I-93 south. Follow “From the NORTH” directions.

From Jamaica Plain/ Brookline: Take the JamaicaWay south to the Arborway. Keep straight to the rotary. Go 3/4 around the rotary and turn into Franklin Park. Go through the park, and turn left onto Blue Hill Avenue. Go about 50 yards, then make a right onto Columbia Road. The Strand is about 1 1/3 miles down on the right, just past the Strand/ Walgreen’s Pharmacy.

Parking

On street parking is available on Columbia Road.

Free off-street parking is available in the Ramsey Street Municipal lot. Ramsey Street is located at the intersection of Dudley Street and Columbia Road behind CVS Pharmacy and Payless Shoes.

For evening and Sunday shows, free parking is also available in the Citizen’s Bank and Santander Bank parking lots. The Citizen’s Bank lot is located at the corner of Columbia Road and Cushing Avenue. The Santander Bank lot is located in the rear of the bank at 585 Columbia Rd.

Public Transit

Red Line: Get off at Andrew station. Take the #16 (Forest Hills) or #17 (Field’s Corner) bus to Upham’s Corner/Dudley Street. Get off in front of Payless Shoe Store. The Strand is up one block on the left, just past Bank of America.

Orange Line: Get off at Ruggles station. Take the #15 (Upham’s Corner) bus via Dudley Station. Get off in front of Get off in front of Payless Shoe Store. The Strand is up one block on the left, just past Bank of America.

Orange Line: Get off at Forest Hills station. Take the #16 (Forest Hills) or #17 (Field’s Corner) bus to Upham’s Corner/Dudley Street. Get off in front of Payless Shoe Store. The Strand is up one block on the left, just past Bank of America.

What is the running time of the production?

The performance runs approximately under 2 hours without intermission.

For student matinees, each performance is followed by a talk back with the cast which will last no more than an additional half hour. Schools may choose to be dismissed before or after the talk back and can indicate this preference when booking.

What ages is the production appropriate for?

Stage2 productions are presented using Shakespeare’s original text, cut for length to approximately 1.5 hours without intermission. Our cuts focus on highlighting the themes, ideas and language that will resonate strongly for a student audience. Our creative team and performers make choices that serve to illuminate the storytelling for this audience without “watering down” the source material.

This year’s Stage2 production is created with a 8th through 12th grade curriculum/audience in mind. A Midsummer Night’s Dream is one of Shakespeare’s most accessible comedies, touching on themes of jealousy, unrequited (or mistaken!) love, grand interference by the fairy kingdom, and finding confidence, maturity and personal agency. We do encourage educators and/or parents to read the play being presented and make the best choice for their students of any age. We recommend discussing the play with your students before and after you view our production. Please use the information and graphic below to gain a better idea of what to expect from this year’s play and let us know if you have specific questions about content.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is there handicap seating available?

Yes, there are several locations in the theater to accommodate wheelchairs.  For student matinees, please indicate any seating needs during booking. For any specific requests for the April 3 performance at 7pm, contact 617-426-0863.

Are assisted listening devices available?

Yes, visit the box office for assisted listening devices.

When should I arrive?

The theater will open for seating roughly a half hour before curtain time. We advise you give yourself plenty of time for parking and walking to the theater.

Where should I park?/How do I get to the theater after parking?

The Strand Theatre staff will meet all buses at the curb in front of the theater for drop-off of students, They will then advise drivers on the best location to park.

Are concessions available?

There is no food or drink permitted in the theater.

For student matinees, students may bring bagged lunches to store under their seats for the duration of the show. No food or drink is to be consumed in the theater during the performance. If your school group would like to secure a space for students to eat in after the performance, please let us know at time of booking.

Are shows delayed or canceled for weather?

Audience and actor safety is our main concern.  In cases of heavy snow or extreme weather, we will cancel and try to re-seat patrons into an alternative performance date.  Weather updates can be found on the homepage of our website, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

For student matinees, a member of our Audience Services team will be in touch with school group’s lead chaperone should there be any changes or cancellations to the performance.

If I miss the show, what are my options?

To reschedule for evening performances, call 617-426-0863 at least one business day before your reservation.  We will make our best efforts to seat you in another performance.  Seating will be based on availability.  It is not our policy to refund tickets but we are happy to re-seat you on another date.  If you miss a production altogether, we will re-seat you in an alternative production of your choice based on availability.

Can I take photos or video?

The taking of photos or video is strictly prohibited.

How can I support Commonwealth Shakespeare Company?

To make a donation or call 617-426-0863.  Click on the Ways To Give tab on our website to learn more about upcoming fundraising events and ways to get involved.

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