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‘Tis almost fairy time!


Jenny Rhoads

An all-female cast will present “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” with four performances scheduled this weekend. (Photo by Jenny Rhoads)

In the familiar Shakespeare comedy “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” the character Lysander (Heidi Vining) best summarizes the show when he says, “The course of love never did run smooth.” The show explores complicated relationships, the dangers of fairies and the effect that love has on all of us.

“As far as I know, Logan Elm has never done a Shakespeare production,” said Aaron Rothey, director and Drama Club adviser. “It is challenging and off the beaten path.”

Rothey, also an English teacher at Logan Elm High School, chose the text because it is familiar to many of the students.

“The text is taught at sophomore level, which helped eliminate the intimidation factor,” he said. “The students truly understand the humor of the play, and it’s been a great experience for them to de-mystify Shakespeare and understand the language. They realize that all of the work they did is worth it.”

Something unique about this production is that it features an all-female cast, which Rothey refers to as a “reverse Shakespeare company.” Some cast members are playing two or three roles.

“The biggest challenge we faced was memorizing lines,” Rothey said. “Some of the bigger characters had to memorize hundreds of lines.”

Standout performers include Tiffany Smolinski (Theseus/Oberon) and Jackie Richardson (Bottom).

The cast also has been instrumental in bringing the production to fruition.

“We made everything,” Rothey said. “From painting sets, to creating props, to being seamstresses, a lot of effort has been put forth for this production.”

Rothey said he also hopes his students are learning more than just their lines.

“I hope that as adults, the students will continue to have an appreciation for Shakespeare and theatre,” he said.

Show times are 7:30 p.m. Friday, 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday and 2:30 p.m. Sunday at the McDowell middle school auditorium.

Tickets are $7 for adults and $5 for seniors (60+) and students, and are available at the door.

Cast List
Theseus/Oberon – Tiffany Smolinski
Hippolyta/Titania – Brittany Irwin
Puck/Philostrate – Jennie Brown
Nick Bottom – Jackie Richardson
Helena – Sarah Julien
Hermia – Mara McDowell
Lysander – Heidi Vining
Demetrius – Vanessa Vining
Quince – Kaitlynn Esquibel
Egeus/Flute/Mustardseed – Ivy Bost
Cobweb/Snug: Abby Lands
Starveling/Moth: Maddie Minor
Snout/Peaseblossom: Piper Stulley

This article originally appeared on The Pickaway News Journal