NEWCOMB - If William Shakespeare had the chance to visit Newcomb Central School the evenings of April 3 and 4 he would have been excited and awestruck to see his odd and very entertaining comedy "A Midsummer Night's Dream" performed by a terrifically talented cast of high school students.
Using lots of references to downtown Newcomb and the staff at Newcomb Central School, the players managed to tell the pretty complicated story of love won and lost, sprites, the enchanted Adirondack forest, and general silliness.
The time of the play is set in 1925, mid-summer, and why not? Costumes ranged from the fanciful green and earth-tone outfits of the various fairies, sprites and elves to the wonderful and creative costumes of the Adirondack rustics who populated the play as clown tradesmen to the mid-twenties flapper/zoot suit clothing styles of the play's royalty and assorted lovers. The Shakespearian banter was great, and it was easy to tell that everyone participating was enjoying the heck out of the play.
The theme of love and its twists and turns runs through the play. Lysander's wisdom concerning the craziness of love comes through here in his comment to his beloved Hermia: "The curse of true love never did run smooth." So true, so true.
The terrific sets provided wonderful and fantastic atmosphere to the play, which took place over five acts. Nearly every Newcomb Central School student in grades 9 - 12 was seen on stage - most of those who weren't had other important backstage work to do to make the play run smoothly.
Middle school students also participated directly through the creation of set pieces and costumes and through critical stage work. This reviewer enjoyed the play immensely - he got to see it the first of its two-night run.
Suffice it to say that the plot is complicated and involved, and requires that the audience pay close attention to the action on-stage.
Director Terri Smith's creativity and imagination along with that of the actors and backstage and technical people made for a truly fun way to spend an evening. The good-sized crowd thought so too; its appreciation of what these students accomplished here was genuine and enthusiastic.