Saturday Selections: A Midsummer Night’s Dream

A painting of Titania and Bottom (who is turned into an ass) from Midsummer Night's Dream

Hey, I know I went with Shakespeare last week, but it’s midsummer right now, and I recently experienced a heat wave, so what the hell. I thought this classic play would be a good pick! 😀

But there’s another reason this show comes to mind with me, and not just because pretty much every actor you meet has probably been in a production! I’ve been in three! But I’m thinking of this play because it’s often written off as fluff, or too goofy–hell even Shakespeare touches on that in the end with Puck! But underneath it all, the play has a poignant message about embracing the good things in life. As one of my favorite literary commentators points out, this show teaches us that not everything in life is about logic. Sometimes you have to just let go of the need for finding a concrete answer for something and lose yourself. Because if you don’t do this, you’ll miss out on life’s subtleties and magic. I think people know to do this when the time comes, at least I hope they do.

Drawing of Shakespeare

Furthermore, I think Shakespeare had this in mind when he wrote this play. Sure Bottom is a buffoon, especially at the beginning of the play, but hey, give him a little credit. His quote towards the end says it all: “I have had a dream past the wit of man to say what dream it was. Man is but an ass if he go about t’expound this dream”. He has an enriching learning experience, and just because he’s not regal or poised like the higher class characters, it doesn’t mean he’s not capable of understanding something as important as this, and expressing it. My advice to you is while you enjoy the comical antics of this play, make sure to read between the lines. And take this advice to real life, you’ll regret it if you don’t.

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