Heritage reimagines “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”

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Senior Gabriela Coutinho played Hippolyta, an Amazon princess set to marry Duke Theseus, while senior Frederick Bredemeyer played Oberon. In this scene, Theseus and Hippolyta discuss their upcoming wedding plans. (Photo/Erin Bryan)

The senior high production of A Midsummer’s Night Dream took center stage on the main theater last week. The re-envisioned Shakespearean comedy, directed by Dr. David Klein, centered around Duke Theseus’s journey with his bride, Hippolyta. Together, they created fairies who treat oblivious mortals to a hazardous night in Faerieland. Unlike the original play, set during the 1600s in Athens, the Heritage production takes place in Acadiana in the 1930s and features Duke Theseus as a Cajun dignitary.  

Dr. Klein found inspiration for his creative take on the play while teaching as a professor at the University of Louisiana. “The culture there is like no other. The Acadian people of Canada migrated to the swamps of southwestern Louisiana,” Dr. Klein said. “I wondered if this land of remote, muddy bayous could become the mythic, enchanted forest of our play.”

After months of preparation, the play finally came to life with lead roles Oberon/Theseus played by senior Frederick Bredemeyer and Puck played by junior Zahra Willis Cox. No stranger to the spotlight, Cox recently made her Nickelodeon debut on I am Frankie, as well as her music video debut in Damian Marley’s hit “Autumn Leaves.” The video now has two million views on YouTube.

Offstage tech rehearsals began just two weeks before the beginning of the play. “Personally, I have helped build the set and work fly rail. As a stage technician almost all the work is a team effort and we had a minimal amount of time to put out a huge tree… as well as a replica of Athens Greece,” said sophomore and fly rail operator Sarah Geller.

This play marked the end of a high school theater career for four graduating seniors; however, the cast and audience made sure it was a night to remember. “The entire cast and crew worked so hard to put out this glorious work of Shakespeare,” Geller said. “I know that the audiences for all three nights were giggling and could feel the sorrow, happiness and agony the actors portrayed.”

Photos courtesy of Erin Bryan of Spotlight Yearbook

Emma is a sophomore at American Heritage School in Plantation Fla. Although this is her first year working as a part of the newspaper, she is extremely excited to be a part of the staff. Emma is also an active member of PAWS and TASSEL. In her free time she loves window shopping at home goods and trying vegan foods.

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