07/27/12 This Friday, Encore’s Music in the Park features magic and laughter on the loose in the woods outside of Athens in Shakespeare’s most popular comedy! Puck leads two pairs of young lovers on a wild and merry chase in search of true romance. And it all takes place on the lawn at the Young Amphitheater—not on stage but on the grass in the midst of the audience.

‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ is presented by a company of actors drawn from the University of Notre Dame, Saint Mary’s College and universities from across the nation. Thanks to the generosity of the Grants Committee of the Marshall County Community Foundation, this open-air performance is free of charge and makes for a dreamy midsummer’s night!

Familiar quotes abound in this spirited production. “The course of true love never did run smooth,” says Lysander to Hermia. Though Shakespeare wrote hundreds of years ago, everyone today can identify. The trouble-maker fairy Puck probably can see into the future when he says, “What fools these mortals be!”

The Young Company is a direct outgrowth of the Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival’s mission to provide exceptional and unparalleled educational opportunities in a theatrical setting to gifted students from the University of Notre Dame and Saint Mary’s College. Young Company members have graduated from the program to enjoy careers in acting, design and production all over the country!

To learn more about the group, log on to their website at http://shakespeare.nd.edu/notre-dame-shakespeare-festival/young-company/

A quick summary from www.enotes.com finds Theseus and Hippolyta are to wed at the new moon, and Philostrate has been ordered to have a party prepared for the wedding. Several local craftsmen agree to write and produce a play for the event. Egeus brings his daughter, Hermia, to Theseus for judgment since he is convinced that her choice of husband, Lysander, has bewitched her into choosing him. According to Athenian law, a father may decide who his daughter marries; if she does not obey, she may be put to death or ordered to a nunnery for the rest of her life. As she is well aware, her father has chosen Demetrius. The craftsmen repair to the woods to rehearse at the same time that Lysander and Hermia meet there to plan their elopement. Hermia and Lysander confide in Helena, who has previously been jilted by Demetrius and wants to win him back. Helena, in turn, tells Demetrius of the young lovers’ meeting.

Fairies have come from India to bless Theseus’ wedding and are haunting the same wood where the craftsmen and lovers plan to meet. Oberon is quarreling with Titania over her continued possession of a changeling; in retaliation for his wife’s actions, Oberon sends Puck to gather the flower necessary to make a love juice. This love juice will cause the one who has it squeezed into his/her eye while asleep to fall in love with the first being seen upon waking. Helena follows Demetrius into the wood as he attempts to find the lovers, thereby disturbing Oberon who then orders Puck to squeeze the love juice into the eye of the youth who disturbed him. Oberon describes Demetrius…

All Music in the Park concerts are in beautiful Centennial Park in the Young Amphitheater. Bring a lawn chair, your favorite beverage and a picnic to enjoy this special music in a delightful setting. If you don’t want to cook, Delta Theta Tau will once again be offering refreshments—each performance with specials that reflect the group performing.

Gates open at 6:00 with the performance at 7:00, a half hour earlier than previous years.

For more information, contact Debi Gidley at Encore Performing Arts, 1305 W. Harrison Street, Plymouth at 935-4987 or the website at www.encoreperformingarts.org.