Location: Marion Carnegie Public Library
206 South Market Street
About the play
Often considered Shakespeare's marriage play, A Midsummer Night's Dream is really four stories in one. The play opens on the Duke of Athens, Theseus, and his bride-to-be Hippolyta (the first story) as they briefly discuss their wedding. Quickly they are interrupted and we learn of a pair of lovers and an angry father (the second story). When the Duke leaves to counsel his subject the lovers devise to run away through the forest. Before we follow them there, we move into town and meet a group of "Rude Mechanicals," skilled-laborers of Athens, that are bent on creating a play to present to the Duke on his wedding day (third story). The Rude Mechanicals also decide to visit the forest in order to rehearse this play. From there we move into the forest where we meet Robin Goodfellow and his fellow fairies. The Fairy King and Queen, Oberon and Titania, are in the midst of an argument that is causing ripples throughout both fairy and human worlds (fourth story), and this particular midsummer night is the night Oberon chooses to end the argument one way or another. The stories all come crashing together as fairies, lovers, workers and eventually the Duke himself meet in the woods, having encounters that lead them all to wonder just what happened and what might have simply been a dream.