(This blog post began life as part of the Tower Theatre Company newsletter and was first published in May 2015)
Our group is now back in harness for the exciting opportunity to participate in the Royal Shakespeare Company’s challenge of providing a team of rude mechanicals for a touring production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream to be mounted in 2016. In case you’ve forgotten (or never knew) the overall title of the project is A Play For The Nation and the RSC intends to work with a local amateur theatre company in each city or town the production visits. The amateurs will play the roles of the mechanicals and they will also be invited to perform at the Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford-upon-Avon at the end of the tour.Back in February we were one of the very few lucky teams to get through the first round and we are now recalled for the so called hub audition. This will take place at the Barbican on Sunday 24th May and at the end of this process one group will be chosen as the “Dream Team” to appear on the London stage with RSC professionals.
We have been asked to reprepare Act 1 Scene 2 (our successful audition piece last time round) and to prepare the Pyramus and Thisbe play within a play scene (Act 5 Scene 1) which as anyone familiar with A Midsummer Night’s Dream will know is a comedy highlight of the whole play. In addition both Maria and I (the team’s Quince and Bottom) have solo pieces to prepare and the whole team have an individual modern monologue to contend with. Quite a challenge then, but one we’re all relishing.
Various holiday commitments have conspired to keep the group apart for a while so it will be all systems go this week as the day of reckoning approaches. On Saturday next we’ve been invited to meet the RSC (and the other shortlisted teams) for drinks and nibbles in the Barbican Green Room ahead of the big day itself on Sunday. As you enjoy your Bank Holiday weekend, please send out positive thoughts as we go for gold and pray that we don’t makes asses of ourselves!