ALBANY (April 5) – William Shakespeare’s popular comedy “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” begins previews at Capital Repertory Theatre in Albany April 14, opens on Tuesday, April 18 and runs through Sunday, May 7. The show is directed by theREP’s Producing Artistic Director Maggie Mancinelli-Cahill.
In a world where dreams and reality blend together, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” tells the story of otherworldly creatures, lovers on the run and a group of amateur actors all within an enchanted forest in Athens. While a feuding Fairy King and Queen are at war, their paths are crossed by Bottom, Quince and their friends presenting a play within a play. Chief mischief-maker Puck is on-hand to ensure that the gender-bending course of true love is anything but smooth. Games of fantasy, love and dreams lead to transformation in Shakespeare’s most beguiling comedy. Add a dash of magic and trickster fairies and in this forest, anything can happen.
The cast features familiar faces and many new ones for this spring frolic. Portraying the play’s royal pair, Chauncy Thomas, makes his debut at theREP as Duke Theseus/King Oberon, alongside veteran Associate Artist at theREP, Yvonne Perry as Hippolyta/Queen Titania. Kyle Garvin returns as Puck from his recently celebrated portrayal of the Cowardly Lion in theREP’s “The Wizard of Oz.” Other favorite returning actors include Kevin McGuire (as Peter Quince), Oliver Wadsworth (as Bottom) and David Girard (as Egeus/Snug). The mismatched lovers feature regional veterans, Ethan Botwick as Lysander and Ellen Cribbs as Helena, with theREP newcomers, Raya Malcolm as Hermia and Tamil Periasamy as Demetrius. The merry band of amateur players is rounded out by John Romeo as Robin Starveling, and in his debut at theREP, Jovan Davis as Flute. Others in this fine cast include Gabrielle Bazinet Douglas (fairy), Josh DeMarco (Fairy) and Taylor Hoffman (Karen Snout/fairy).
In addition to Mancinelli-Cahill, the creative team includes Costume Designer Sera Bourgeau, Scenic Designer Brian Prather, Sound Designer Jane Shaw, Lighting Designer Shelby Loera, Fight Choreographer David Girard and Choreographer Freddy Ramirez, who is an associate artist for theREP.
Previews for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” take place at theREP, 251 N. Pearl St., Albany, April 14-16. Opening night is Tuesday, April 18. Performances continue through Sunday, May 7. Regular performance times April 14-May 7, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday with matinees 3 p.m. Saturday, 2 p.m. Sunday and 2 p.m. Wednesday, April 26.
Tickets range from $27-62. For tickets and information, call the Box Office 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Monday-Saturday at (518) 346-6204 or visit capitalrep.org. The box office at theREP, 251 N. Pearl St. will open 30 minutes before show time.
Opening Night – Tuesday, April 18
Includes complimentary, post-show champagne toast.
Chef’s Table – 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 25
Hors d’oeuvres will be provided by local restaurants/cash bar.
ASL Performance – 3 p.m. Saturday, April 29
This performance features sign language interpreters. To request access to the designated seating section, please call the box office at (518) 346-6204.
Thirsty Thursday – 6:30 p.m. Thursday, May 4
Light fare and tasting samples from local breweries, cideries, and distilleries.
Behind the Scenes – 1 p.m. Sunday, May 7
12:30 p.m.. complimentary coffee and pastry before the presentation.
A pre-show presentation with Producing Artistic Director Maggie Mancinelli-Cahill with a special presentation. This special conversation is free and open to the public.
There is limited street parking in direct proximity to the theatre at 251 N. Pearl St., Albany, 12207 (GPS address).
NEW PARKING LOT: Limited parking day of the show is available in the theatre’s new lot one block north of the theatre on N. Pearl St. Unreserved parking spaces will be sold at the lot 60 minutes before the performance time at a cost of $10 each via credit/debit card. Season parking passes will be available beginning with the 23-24 season by calling the box office at (518) 346-6204.
About the Artists
Gabrielle Bazinet Douglas is originally from Albany and recently made her debut at theREP in “The Wizard of Oz.” She has also performed in “Mamma Mia!” (Bucks County Playhouse) and “White Christmas” (Rider University) and will be performing as a fairy.
Ethan Botwick will be making his MainStage debut at theREP as Lysander. Botwick is the associate artistic director at Troy Foundry Theatre and has also performed in “Romeo & Juliet” and “As You Like It” (Saratoga Shakespeare Company) as well as “Julius Caesar” (The Public Theater).
Ellen Cribbs is returning to theREP stage as Helena after playing Anne de Bourgh in “Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley” and the Nurse in “Shakespeare in Love.” She is also the artistic director at the Albany Civic Theatre and co-hosts the podcast “Everything Theater.”
Jovan Davis, portraying Francis Flute/Peaseblossom, is based in Brooklyn and currently working on his first TV pilot. He is a Shakespeare fanatic having portrayed Othello in “Othello,” Oberon in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and others as well as on TV in “New Amsterdam” and “Mrs. Smith.”
Josh DeMarco will be returning to theREP stage as Fairy/Puck understudy. DeMarco is an Albany native who has been involved with theREP for about 5 years including “The Wizard of Oz,” “Jersey Boys,” “The Full Monty” and others.
Kyle Garvin was most recently on the MainStage at theREP in “The Wizard of Oz” as the Cowardly Lion and in “Jersey Boys.” Garvin has toured nationally in “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” among others and will be portraying Philostrate/Robin Goodfellow/Puck.
David Girard (Snug/Egeus/Moth) Artistic Director of Troy Foundry, just seen in “The Wizard of Oz” (Gatekeeper, Niko, Uncle Henry); also: “Shakespeare in Love,” and a very memorable performance as Freddy Malins in James Joyce’s “The Dead.” David will do triple duty on “Midsummer” as actor, fight choreographer and dramaturg.
Taylor Hoffman is back as Karen Snout/Fairy in her second production at theREP after “The Wizard of Oz.” Other performances include “Fun Home” (Yale School of Drama) and “Spring Awakening” (Theatre Institute at Sage).
Raya Malcolm will be making her debut at theREP as Hermia. She recently appeared in “Things I Know to Be True” (Great Barrington Public) and is the associate artistic director of Troy Foundry Theatre.
Kevin McGuire (Peter Quince/Oberon’s Fairy) is an Associate Artist for theREP. Kevin has been seen in many shows at theREP, most recently as the Wizard in “The Wizard of Oz,” “The True,” “The Irish and How They Got That Way” and many others. He will also be serving as the text coach for this production.
Tamil Periasamy is making his debut at theREP as Demetrius after performing nationally in over 30 Renaissance productions. He has also performed in “Richard III” (off-Broadway) as well as in TV and film in “Dopesick,” “Dynasty” and others.
Yvonne Perry is an associate artist at theREP and will be Hippolyta/Titania. Perry frequently performs, directs and serves on the NEXT ACT! New Play Summit reading committee. She’s also performed with Saratoga Shakespeare, NYSTI, Hubbard Hall and others as well as originating a role on the television show “As the World Turns.”
John Romeo is returning to theREP as Robin Starveling/Fairy after last seen in “Blithe Spirit” and “Shakespeare in Love.” He was a resident actor with NYSTI for 28 years and performed in Moscow, Italy, Jordan, Sweden and London’s West End and his hometown, Albany.
Chauncy Thomas is making his debut at theREP as Theseus/Oberon. He has previously performed in the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, the Illinois Shakespeare Festival and will next be seen at the Great River Shakespeare Festival.
Oliver Wadsworth is returning to theREP stage as Nick Bottom after appearing in “Red Maple,” “Fully Committed,” “The Taming of the Shrew” and others. He was in the first National Tour of “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang” as well as appearing in many off-Broadway productions and television and film including “Blacklist” and “Law & Order: SVU.”