Shakespeare on the waterfront: Bard’s ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’ coming to Pier One

Donkey business: David Fuller will make an ass of himself as Nick Bottom in Theater2020’s production of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”
Courtesy of Judith Jarosz

All of Brooklyn Heights is a stage.

A performance of Shakespeare’s classic comedy “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” will first take place in Saint Charles Borromeo Church on Sydney place in May and then go outdoors to Brooklyn Bridge Park in June.

The director Judith Jarosz said she envisions her production as a pack of travelling performers — not unlike the band of actors who decide to rehearse the fictional “Most Lamentable Comedy and Most Cruel Death of Pyramus and Thisbe” in the forest outside ancient Athens in the play — who will have to adjust their acting to fit the production’s two venues.

“You have to be adaptable. Out in the park you have to speak louder, and your gesticulations physically need to be more broad than in a closed space like the church, and you have to interact differently with the different spaces,” said Jarosz.

But though the open-air performance presents a challenge, Jarosz — who oversaw a production of the Bard’s “Comedy of Errors” involving puppets in the park last summer, and a run of “Romeo and Juliet” with a Muslim-Hindu theme in 2011 — said the greenspace makes for the greatest stage in all the world.

“It’s right on the water, with the skyline of Manhattan behind my actors, and the Brooklyn Bridge glowing down. What more could you ask for?” said Jarosz.

“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” at Saint Charles Borromeo Church [21 Sidney Place, near the corner of Livingston Street], May 17, 8 pm, $18 and at Bard at Pier One in Brooklyn Bridge Park [Furman Street, between Old Fulton and Doughty streets, in Brooklyn Heights. (718) 624–3614, www.theater2020.com]. June 7, 7 pm, free.

Reach reporter Will Bredderman at wbredderman@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4507. Follow him at twitter.com/WillBredderman.

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