Fountain Hills Theater presents twist on Shakespeare classic

From left to right Roger Prenger, Doug Simmons, Owen Zerambo, Matt McDonald, Sean Owen and Zach Percevecz with Tom Vinopal and Heidi Carpenter in the foreground. (Submitted Photo)

Fountain Hills Theater has announced the opening of “Midsummer Dreamin’” a new musical adapted by FHT’s Artistic Director Peter J. Hill from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” by William Shakespeare on its mainstage at 11445 N. Saguaro Blvd.

“Midsummer Dreamin’” is a modern adaptation of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” set in the summer of love and will play from June 30 to July 30, according to a press release. Performances are Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 2 p.m.

Shakespeare’s characters are set in a hippy-dippy America and sing tunes like The Lion Sleeps Tonight, Y.M.C.A. and Aquarius, just to name a few.

Mia is in love with Andy, but her father wants her to marry Denny. To escape the arranged marriage, she and Andy elope into the woods.

Denny follows them, and he is pursued by Helen, who nurses an unrequited passion for him. A love quadrangle develops among the young lovers when mischievous Puck plays Cupid. “The course of true love never did run smooth,” says Andy.

Meanwhile, a group of amateur actors rehearses a badly-written play in the woods and soon all find their lives changed by the doings of Oberon and Titania, the warring king and queen of the fairies.

The adapting author, Mr. Hill says setting this comedy in the era of hippies and free love was a natural for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” The conservative parents’ fear their straight-laced daughter Mia was falling for the more rebellious, long-haired, hippy Andy was common during the summer of love.

The play also includes forest fairies as true flower children as well as a “magical plant” that confuses the lovers.

Mr. Hill adapted this Shakespeare comedy because of its enduring popularity.

Individual tickets are $30 for Adults and $23 for Youth 17 and under. Seniors receive a $5 discount on certain performances. Group rates and student rush discounts are available as well as veteran and active duty discounts.

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