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Photography: Tassou Amerikanos

A Midsummer Night’s Dream

by William Shakespeare

Adapted and directed by Kelly Wilson

Original music by Karlin Love and Kelly Wilson

 6-9 April, 2022

Earl Arts Centre, Launceston

"The Dream is given a robust, accessible and thoroughly enjoyable production by a talented and committed cast. . . . The music of Karlin Love and Kelly Wilson is throughout impressive and expressive. . . . [It is] a production which is theatrically rich and challenging and which is truly experimental here and now, in our city, not just a skilled repetition of something already created elsewhere." Michael Edgar

Nursing home patients and their families:

Cynthia Goodfellow / Titania . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Anne Riley

Sebastian Goodfellow / Oberon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Christopher Bryg

Robyn “Puck” Goodfellow/ Puck . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Ashley Eyles

William / Nathaniel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . David Lee

William’s Daughter / Young Cynthia / Hermia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Toni Prestage

Husband / Young Sebastian / Lysander . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Grady Lynch

William’s Son / Antonio / Demetrius . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Robbie Bleakley

Wife / Andrea / Helena . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Elkie Kershaw

 

Nurses at nursing home (The ‘Medicinals’):

Nick Bottom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Nathaniel Wood

Francis Flute / Cobweb . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kevin Vong

Rachel Starveling / Moth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Billie Ford

Tamara Snout / Peaseblossom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Mel Grossman

Lucy Snug / Mustardseed . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Racheal Leigh

Nurse / Marigold / Dresser . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Janice Molineux

Artistic/Technical Roles:

Adaptation, Artistic Direction and Musical Composition. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kelly Wilson 

Musical Composition and Arrangement. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Karlin Love Stage Manager/Projection Operator. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Chloe Sward

Ast. Stage Manager. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Cooper Goodall

Musical Accompaniment (guitar). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Raj Sinha

Dance Choreography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Melissa Wimmer

Multi-media Projection/Sound Design. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Chris Jackson

Lighting Design. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Mark Smith

Lighting/Sound Operator. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Sean Wilson

Costume Design. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Janice Molineux & Naomi Leighton

Fight Choreography. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Grady Lynch & Robbie Bleakley

Set Design and Painting. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kelly Wilson

Set Construction. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Sean Wilson

Projection & Production Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Laura Eastley

Production Filming. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Aaron Beck

Poster Design and Photography. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Tassou Amerikanos

Promotional Video . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Laura Eastley

Publicity. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Kelly Wilson

 

Directorial Interpretation and Summary:

This contemporary adaptation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream retains William Shakespeare’s original text, while reframing the narrative action around the central characters of Cynthia, a mother in her forties, diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s disease, and her husband Sebastian Goodfellow to create a production which explores dreams as an extension of memories and fears. Filled with all the fun and hilarity an audience would expect from the play, the production also contains heart-felt reflections upon the power of love and forgiveness. 

 

Cynthia’s passion for theatre began in her youth when she fell in love with the works of Shakespeare. Her favourite play is A Midsummer Night’s Dream and she closely identifies with the character of Hermia because, as a young woman, Cynthia fell in love with Sebastian, a talented musician of whom her father disapproved. Her father, Nathaniel, insisted that she marry Antonio, a young man with a mind for business like his own. However, following the example of her favourite Shakespearean character, Cynthia eloped with Sebastian, prompting her father to disinherit her and never speak to her again. 

 

The performance begins 25 years after Cynthia’s marriage to Sebastian. They are still a happily married couple with a grown daughter. Yet, Cynthia has recently moved to a nursing home to get the support that she, Sebastian, and her daughter Robyn need as they confront the harsh realities of early onset Alzheimer’s disease. Cynthia’s condition is regressing, resulting in the loss of her memory of her daughter, which upsets Robyn very deeply. Cynthia believes that she is once again in her twenties, only four days away from her life changing wedding day to Sebastian. 

 

To celebrate their upcoming ‘wedding’, Cynthia plans to direct a short play, Pyramus and Thisbe, to be performed for Sebastian as a wedding gift, which the nursing home encourages because creative pursuits can assist with the retention of memory. Cynthia enlists a crew of willing nurses to act in her production; however, she experiences waking dreams, inspired by memories and fears from her youth (represented in the adventures of Demetrius, Helena, Hermia and Lysander in the wood), memories of her first love, who resembles the charming Nurse Nick, and the path not taken with him (represented by Titania’s adventures with Bottom in the wood) and present day fears that trouble Cynthia, such as the strange young woman (Robyn) who accompanies Sebastian during his visits (represented in the jealous contention between Titania and Oberon).

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Photography: Laura Eastley
Music Composer
Karlin Love is a composer and performer based in Tasmania. In 1989 Karlin moved from the USA to Australia to take the woodwind lecturer position at the University of Tasmania in Launceston where she taught clarinet, saxophone, theory, composition and improvisation until 1997, and composition and music technology for the University’s Faculty of Education and TAFE Tasmania until 2010. She is now a free-lance composer, performer, and teacher, and continues to work with senior secondary students. Most of Karlin’s composition is for acoustic instruments such as lute, guitar, clarinet, or symphonic winds. Frequently writing for local amateur performers, her works extend and expand traditional sound worlds. She has worked extensively with the instruments of leather sculptor, the late Garry Greenwood, developing their performance potential with The Chordwainers quartet and the Tasmanian Leather Orchestra of eager local musicians. Her works have been performed in Europe, the UK, USA, New Zealand, and China, and recorded by Australian professional and amateur ensembles. Karlin is a fully represented composer with the Australian Music Centre. She was a recipient of a Dombrovskis Wilderness Residency in 1998, a Cataract Gorge residency in 2002, AIR (Arts Tasmania) Schools residency in 2016 and was the Australian Society for Music Education composer-in-residence in 2009.
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