A ‘Dream’ Cast

Shakespeare’s ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’ will be first maskless show since pandemic

Nolan Zils, Co Editor-in-Chief

The newly anointed cast for the fall play “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” met Monday as group a group for the first time in director Jennifer Sorkin’s room to walk through Shakespeare’s classic comedy.

It will also be the first performance the Backstage Bruins put on in nearly three years that will be maskless, a fact that Sorkin and other club members said they don’t take lightly.

Citing frequent exposure notices, Sorkin and club president Marilyn Alonzo warned actors at the beginning of the read-through that they must be careful if they want to put on the show, especially since they will not have understudies, or stand-ins for performers.

Though masks are optional during rehearsals, Alonzo encouraged performers to wear masks, citing a recently canceled Leigh show.

Senior cast member Jack Lawrence, who plays Nick Bottom, says that he thinks it’s doable to have a maskless performance.

“I think we can totally pull it off,” he said. “So long as we’re all safe, and we know what we’re doing around people.”

He added that a maskless show can help the audience can have an easier time comprehending the language.

“In my mind, (for) understanding Shakespeare… if someone does not have good diction, which a lot of us don’t, is hard enough in itself,” he said.

During the read-through, students took notes on their computer while an audio description explained the context and basics of the play, a comedy piece with more than two intertwining and simultaneous plots. James Kopp, Sorkin’s husband, is advising the production, and helped clarify complicated plot points.

Play rehearsals will continue throughout the week after school in the Performing Arts Center.

Senior Pirri Slayton, sound designer and sound board operator, takes notes on their computer as they listen to an audio summary of the play, which has four simultaneous plotlines. (Nolan Zils)