Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” on stage at Tehran theater 

January 3, 2022 - 18:25

TEHRAN – William Shakespeare’s play “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” was performed on Monday at the Nazerzadeh Kermani Hall of Tehran’s Iranshahr Theater Complex.

Amin Zendegani is directing the play with a cast of 19 actors, including Aisan Moshfeq, Sara Mahdavi, Mohammadreza Vaziri, Shervin Panahi and Mehdi Hekmati.

Written in 1595 or 1596, the comedy is set in Athens, and consists of several subplots that revolve around the marriage of Theseus and Hippolyta. 

One subplot involves a conflict among four Athenian lovers. Another follows a group of six amateur actors rehearsing the play which they are to perform before the wedding. 

Both groups find themselves in a forest inhabited by fairies who manipulate the humans and are engaged in their own domestic intrigue. 

The play is one of Shakespeare’s most popular and is widely performed.

Iranian director Mostafa Kushki staged the play and “Coriolanus”, Shakespeare’s other play, at the Tehran Independent Theater in summer 2019.

His troupe also performed the play in Gyula, Hungary 2019 during the Gyula Shakespeare Festival.

The weeklong festival is part of a six-week all-arts festival, featuring the performances of historical dramas, different forms of contemporary theater, opera, ballet, modern dance, jazz, blues, puppet shows, classical music, folk music and folk dance.

Hamid Purazari, another Iranian director, also staged “A Midsummer Dream” at the London International Festival of Theater (LIFT) in 2012.

The play was entered into the Register of the Stationers’ Company on October 8, 1600 by the bookseller Thomas Fisher, who published the first quarto edition later that year.

A second quarto was printed in 1619 by William Jaggard, as part of his so-called False Folio.

The play next appeared in print in the First Folio of 1623. The first performance known with certainty occurred at Hampton Court on January 1, 1604, as a prelude to “The Masque of Indian and China Knights”.

Photo: A poster for William Shakespeare’s play “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”.

MMS/YAW

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