Midsummer Magic Begins

posted by Director Eric Brant

Last night at 7:30 PM we finally gathered the cast of A Midsummer Night's Dream together for our first read through of the script that we'll be presenting for CST and The Valparaiso Department of Parks & Recreation's Shakespeare in the Park production taking place on July 13 and 14 at Valpo's Central Park Plaza. This production is over a year in the making and it is one of the biggest projects Chicago Street has ever put together.

Seven months had passed since Steve Holm and I cast the play, and since that time, we've been meeting with various committees and assembling our production crew. There have also been some changes in the cast that we had to address because some of the actors we originally cast had things come up that prevented them from staying in the show. One thing that Steve and I decided was that we needed to bring on an Assistant Director, who was more organized than us, to help us manage the mayhem of coordinating the forty some people we have working on this project. In a miracle of fate we were able to get the very talented Mary DeBoer who had expressed some interest in working on the play.Together the three of us have been coordinating so much behind the scenes with costumer JoBeth Cruz, lighting designer Marcia Burbage, sound director Paul Braun and music designer Nancy Haller, that it is a welcome break just to get to this first read through. 

Although we still have a few adjustment to make with the cast, this Tuesday night we have the majority of our players present to read their parts together for the first time. It's fantastic just to hear the text from this very talented group of performers. In the next few weeks we'll be working very hard in rehearsals as they bring Shakespeare's wonderful cast of characters to life. 

As time permits, I'll be checking in with some updates. I also hope to have some of the production team blog about the joys and concerns of some of the work they're doing on the show. We're getting ready to make some magic! And isn't that what Summer's really all about?