A Midsummer Night's Dream in Athens

Posted on: March 28, 2013

The Department of Fine Arts at Tennessee Wesleyan College and the Athens Community Theater announce their joint production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare to be performed April 4 through 13, in the Sue E. Trotter Theater at The Arts Center in Athens, Tenn.

Shakespeare set his play long ago in Athens, Greece.  This town & gown production also takes place long ago – in Athens, Tennessee! The story unfolds in 1822, the year of Athens’ founding.  The female lovers, their families, and their leader, Theseus, are the Cherokee who lived in this area for generations. The male lovers wooing the women are Mountain men who have come down from the hills. They have new neighbors, the Scotch-Irish American settlers who have come seeking new lands and a new life.

Shakespeare’s famous fairies are the native woodland spirits who filled the primeval forests before they were clear-cut; driving the fairies out much as the Cherokee would be driven out. However, this story takes place before these tragedies; when Cherokee, white settlers, and the forest spirits coexisted in and around Athens, Tennessee. The music of Felix Mendelssohn is featured throughout the production.

The play is directed by Dr. Eric Love, TWC assistant professor of theater and speech. Musical direction is provided by Dr. Nathan Windt, assistant professor of music.

The cast  of A Midsummer Night’s Dream is a mixture of student and community actors including Bobby B. as Bottom; Johnathon Lamb as Demetrius; G. David Brown as Egeus; Annie Hopson as Helena; Aislin Kate Anderson as Hermia; Lisa Latham as Hippolyta; Merrick Gray as Lysander; Aaron Martel as Oberon; Julia Fioravanti as Philostrate; Kelly Borwick as Puck; Dave Siklosi as Theseus; Maria Holder as Titania; and townspeople and fairies -  Alex Boris, Jason Carusillo, Brianna Dorn, Katie Smith, and Steve Walker.

Show dates are April 4, 5, 6, 11, 12, and 13 at 7:30 p.m. and April 7 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $12 for adults, $8 for students, and are available by phone at 423-745-8781, online at www.athensartscouncil.org, or in person at The Arts Center, 320 North White Street in Athens, Tenn.