ARLINGTON, VA – Under a Maxfield Parrish moon faeries morph into fireflies casting a magical glow and transporting the audience into a stunning adaptation of Shakespeare’s classic love story. World renowned Synetic Theater presents a highly creative pantomime version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream with an evening of visual drama, extraordinary athleticism and Chaplinesque slapstick. Performed around the world since its debut in 2009, this mega-sensory fantasy is one of Synetic’s premiere productions. For those unfamiliar with the company’s many wordless productions of reinterpreted classics such as The Servant of Two Masters, Phantom of the Opera, The Tempest (performed in six inches of water!) and countless mind-blowing presentations over their 20-year history, this richly visual production will make you a convert for life.
Set to a mix of electronika, tango, waltzes and original music by Koki Lortkipanidze (who as Starveling plays silent film music on an upright piano onstage), this beloved dramedy is directed by visionary co-founder Paata Tsikurishvili and choreographed by brilliant co-founder Irina Tsikurishvili. A sensory explosion of color and action, it transports the audience on a phantasmagorical voyage.
Surprises and plot twists will keep you in both suspense and amusement. In the scene where the lovers hide from one another they are discovered in the woods beneath golden lotus leaves in what is typically set in an English garden. Themes of the play-within-a-play are cleverly remixed and so is the relationship between Oberon and Titania. Here we find them as a sexy, belly-dancing Titania (Stella Bunch) and Oberon (Philip Fletcher) as a gladiator-inspired, superhero whose relationship reveals jaw-dropping fight scenes and sensuous tangos.
As the devilish Puck, tiny redhaired Ariel Kraje’s sinuous and athletic moves reminded me of a Cirque du Soleil artist in flight. Clad in sky blue chiffon tendrils, she is as captivating as a butterfly on the wing. In yet another star turn as one of Synetic’s finest performers Vato Tsikurishvili (in dual roles as both the goofy donkey Bottom and conflicted Egeus) displays a breathtaking range of flips, leaps, fight skills and deadfalls enhanced by his comic facial expressions.
Frothy and fierce and highly recommended. Grab your tickets now!
With Irene Hamilton as Hippolyta/Snake; Kim-Anh Aslanian as Cobweb; Alissa Zagorski as Peaseblossom; Nathan Weinberger as Quince; Katherine DuBois as Flute; Pablo Guillen as Smug/Theseus; Josh Lucas as Snout; Lev Belolipetski as Lysander; Nutsa Tediashvili as Hermia; Anna Tsikurishvili as Helena; Aaron Kan as Demetrius; and Bengt-Erik Nelson as Tom.
Fight Choreographer Ben Cunis; Scenic Design by Phil Charlwood; Costume Design by Anastasia Rurikov; and Lighting Design by Andrew Griffin.
Through July 24th at Synetic Theater, 1800 South Bell Street, Arlington, VA 22202. For tickets and information visit www.SyneticTheater.org or call the box office one hour before showtime at 703 824-8060 (Extension #117).