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30th Jun, 2022

A super summer night's entertainment at Avoncroft

Droitwich Editorial 13th Jul, 2014 Updated: 17th Oct, 2016

WHEN the weather is fine and the venue is right, you cannot beat outdoor theatre and that was exactly the situation when Oddsocks brought their interpretation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream to Avoncroft Museum.

The group bills itself as ‘Shakespeare with a sense of humour’ and this production provided all that and more.

As well as the beautiful setting, against a backdrop of old buildings, there was an impressive colourful two-tier stage, along with equally impressive colourful characters in colourful costumes which delighted the large audience that turned out for the show.

This small travelling group – as would have been prevalent in Shakespearean times – showed themselves to be a talented and versatile bunch, with some of the six playing two parts and others even playing three.

There were some great performances on the night, including Dom Gee-Burch as the musical and comedic Lysander and Joseph Maudsley who played Demetrius and Peter Quince (The Carpenter). He, along with Andy Barrow as Bottom, had the crowd in hysterics as they performed as the workmen putting on a play. Among the highlights were their interaction with audience members, getting one upon stage to be ‘the wall’, plenty of raucous banter and light-heartedly scavenging of food and drink from those watching.

In fact, there was some great interaction with the audience all night as the players frequently broke from the script to indulge the crowd.

But the best thing about this show was the sheer slapstick comedy in it. Among the highlights were when Lysander and Demetrius and Helena and Hermius were fighting, with the extremes being two of them being struck by a guitar.

Louisa Farrant was great as Helena but the performance of the evening was by Rebecca Little as Hermia.

Her over the top approach was a thrill to watch and brought plenty of hilarity. She also gave a perceptive portrayal as Puck.

Overall Oddsocks did exactly what the group set out to do and, if you get the chance to see them, are well worth a watch.

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