A Midsummer Night’s Dream
The contrast runs through the show’s design. The repressed human characters wear buttoned up costumes in formal 16th-century style. But the spirits of the fairy kingdom are dressed as sensuous gypsies in more revealing, colorful garb. (Rebecca Dines, as Titania, flashes as much belly button as Britney Spears.) Puck wears an open shirt that shows off his slender figure.
Hall also shifts gears in dramatic terms. The scenes in which Bottom and his “rude mechanicals” organize a show are antic comedy. But at other times, Hall slows down the pace, conjuring a mysterious atmosphere that lets the script’s poetry come through.
It’s a good Dream, as worthy a production as any I’ve seen at other festivals in recent years. The problem is that the play’s been done so often; Tahoe Shakespeare has staged this comedy three times in the last eight years. It’s time to branch out.