in association with the cell, A Twenty First Century Salon™
present The Hive's
A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S (QUEER) DREAM
The Course of True Love Never Did Run Smooth
“Easily the most persuasive and compelling Midsummer of the dozen I have seen… bold choices unlock a level of this play which is rarely discovered… The Hive's vision shows us real people in real pain. It's still a comedy, but with a bitter edge — a remarkably effective balance of kinky delights and profound frustration.” – Show Business Weekly
“Ground-breaking interpretation of this play…A MUST SEE!” – nytheatre.com
“The timing of this gender-bending version of Shakespeare's ‘A Midsummer Night's Dream’ couldn't be more appropriate given New York State's recent legislation for same-sex marriage.” – Back Stage
“Immensely enjoyable…with wit and wicked imagination, artistic director Matthew A.J. Gregory challenges marriage inequality” – The Advocate
“This is not your 10th grade English class's Shakespeare.” – Broadway World
“The buzz on the Hive’s Midsummer could not be sweeter, busier, more joyful, and oh, so worth the tiny ticket price… revisit Shakespeare’s wealth of words, marvel at the perfection of couples brought together from pure love and lust with no meddling laws to obstruct. It is perfect that a play penned five centuries ago is a modern vehicle to celebrate the summer of same sex marriage.” – Edge
“Staged with the playful spirit and insane lust as many previous Midsummer productions but with a few twists that ultimately reinforce the show’s classic ribbing on the passion, dysfunction, power plays, and half-crazed acts of love… In changing the gender roles and the expectations that come with it, the characters gain complexity while displaying the universal draw of forbidden romance, unrequited love, and the constant one-upmanship for dominance over your partner. – Women About Town
“The cell and The Hive’s rendition totally hit the spot… Shakespeare’s text with a mélange of characters and scenes that truly reflect relevant cultural issues… A Midsummer Night’s Dream was a dream I never wanted to wake up from.” – Inside New York
Written by WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE
Starring RON BOBST*, CHRIS CRITELLI*, SAMUEL T. GAINES*,
FERNANDO GAMBARONI*, SHIRA GREGORY*, MEGHAN GRACE O’LEARY*,
SARAH KAUFFMAN, MARISSA PARNESS, GLENN QUENTIN, GUY RADER,
MICHAEL RAVER*, CHRIS THORN, ALAN WINNER*
*Performing Courtesy of Actor’s Equity Association. AEA approved showcase.
Directed by MATTHEW A.J. GREGORY
FOUR-WEEK LIMITED ENGAGEMENT
APRIL 25 – MAY 19 AT THEATER FOR A NEW CITY
OPENING NIGHT IS FRIDAY APRIL 27
TICKETS ON SALE NOW AT SMARTTIX.COM
Theater For The New City, Crystal Field, Artistic Director in association with the cell are pleased to present an encore engagement of The Hive's critically-acclaimed gender-bender production of William Shakespeare’s A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S (QUEER) DREAM, directed by Matthew A.J. Gregory. A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S (QUEER) DREAM will play a limited engagement at the Johnson Theatre-Theatre for the New City (155 First Avenue, btw. 9th/10th). Performances begin Wednesday, April 25 and continue through Saturday, May 19. Opening Night is Friday, April 27 (8 p.m.).
“The course of true love never did run smooth, and it doesn’t run straight either in the Hive Theater Company’s immensely enjoyable mounting of Shakespeare’s comedy about star-crossed Athenian lovers. With wit and wicked imagination, artistic director Matthew A.J. Gregory challenges marriage inequality simply by casting a woman as Lysander and a man as Helena — not to mention the fairy drag queen Titania and drag king Oberon.” – The Advocate
This is not your grandmother’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, but one for 21st century NYC—a modern re-imagining of Shakespeare’s classic, which casts Hermia and Lysander as lesbian lovers with Demetrius and Helena as a gay couple. In the midst of the national gay marriage controversies, this production exposes contemporary America's sexual hang-ups and resistance to gay marriage. Concepts of what constitutes gender, sexual orientation and power will be explored and exploded! A wild bacchanal of every fetish imaginable--filled with delectable and dangerous fairies straight out of everyone’s fantasies and fears.
The production stars Chris Critelli* (frequent appearances at Lincoln Center Songbook Series, Off Broadway – THE NEW HOPEVILLE COMICS) as Puck/Philostrate, Meghan Grace O'Leary* as Oberon/Hippolyta, Samuel Gaines* (KING LEAR at Kansas City Rep) as Titania/Theseus, Shira Gregory* (FROST/NIXON on Broadway) as Lysander, Alan Winner* (Trevor Nunn’s GONE WITH THE WIND in the West End) as Demetrius, Marissa Parness as Hermia, Michael Raver * (Notable credit - VIEUX CARRE at The Pearl Theatre Co directed by Austin Pendleton) as Helena, Ron Bobst * (Notable credits - WOYZECK at Toy Box Theatre Company, TOGETHER THIS TIME at NY Fringe (Lucille Lortel Theatre)) as Egeus/Tom Snout/Peasblossom, Chris Thorn* as Nick Bottom, Sarah Kauffman as Quince/Moth, Fernando Gambaroni* (Flea Theatre – MRS. FARNSWORTH with Sigourney Weaver, Mac Wellman’s CELLOPHANE) as Robin Starveling.
The production features scenic design by Justin Couchara (Recent: Asst. Scenic Designer for Peter and the Starcatcher, Lead Props Sculptor for Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson), costume design by Elizabeth Barrett Groth, and lighting design by Nick Gonsman (Recent: Field Project Coordinator for ETC). Stephanie Riddle is the sound designer, Kyle Haggerty is the assistant director, Jen Littlefield is the choreographer, Scott Barrow is the fight director, Kirin McCory is the assistant fight director, Joseph Jonah Therrien is the shadow puppet designer and Lauren Williams is the stage manager.
A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM plays the following schedule through Saturday, May 19:
Wednesday at 8pm
Thursday at 8pm
Friday at 8pm
Saturday at 3pm and at 8pm
Sunday at 8pm – pay what you can at the door
Tickets are $25 ($20 student/senior; plus Sunday performances are pay what you can at the door) and are available at www.smarttix.com or (212) 868-4444. Tickets may also be purchased in-person at the theater ½ hour prior to performance.
Theatre for the New City – Johnson Theatre
155 First Avenue
(between 9th and 10th Streets)
Running Time: 120 minutes including a 15-minute intermission
MATTHEW A.J. GREGORY (Director) As a director, actor and costume designer, Matthew has worked on and off Broadway, and in venues across the country. He has directed productions for the Secret Theatre, Saratoga Second Stage, NYU and most recently directed a modern re-imagining of A Midsummer Night's Dream at the cell theatre in Chelsea. He has performed at the Kennedy Center, the Saratoga Shakespeare Company and Off-Broadway at the Mint Theater. His designs have been seen at the Juilliard School, the Theatre for the New City and the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey. Matthew has also worked as a costume artisan on various films including “X-Men”, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”, and “Charlie’s Angels”. As an educator, Matthew has taught at Adelphi University, SUNY Albany, Siena College and is now a member of the faculty at CUNY - Kingsborough.
Matthew is the Artistic Director and a founding member of the Hive Theatre Company. He is dedicated to promoting social and economic justice through theatre and education.
THE HIVE THEATRE COMPANY is an experiment in collaboration dedicated to building and serving community through play.
The Hive is committed to:
· Producing original works created from the ground up by the full company, reinventing the classics, and fostering the work of new and under-exposed playwrights.
· Providing affordable productions that engage audiences as participants in an immersive theatrical event rather than simply spectators.
· Nurturing artists in and around the NYC metro area.
· Continuing to demonstrate how theatre raises social awareness.
· Reaching out to artists, audiences and sponsors in order to enrich and expand our community.
About the cell: A Twenty First Century Salon™
Since its inception in 2006, the cell: A Twenty First Century Salon™ (Nancy Manocherian, Founding Director; Kira Simring, Artistic Director) has been, and continues to be, an incubator for creative projects. Through its strong commitment to cultivate undiscovered artists, the cell has created residencies for diverse groups including the Tandem Reading Series, Center for Contemporary Opera and The Blackboard Reading Series. the cell is located in the heart of Chelsea, New York City. For more information, please visit www.thecelltheatre.org.
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