Tuesday January 25, 2011 / 8:00pmA Midsummer Night's Dream
Assigned at Box Office
How was your experience?
We saw our first Synetic show (King Arthur) just a few months ago and loved it. When we saw that "Midsummer" was returning, we were determined to see it as well, given the word-of-mouth and reviews about the original production. As with "King Arthur", the Synetic experience is a very unique evening of theater and the physical performances are astounding, but we were generally slightly (slightly!) less enthralled by "Midsummer" than we were with "King Arthur". As one of our party observed, the Synetic style of story-telling lends itself better to darker/drama than lighter/comedy. I am inclined to agree. This show is at its best when it is "in the woods" and creating a magical world of michief among the fairies and imps. Conversely, the scenes "indoors" feel more like long ballet dances and/or frantic clowns and mimes (a la the Big Apple Circus or Cirque du Soleil) We still enjoyed the production very much and we are looking forward to King Lear. It was just surprising to us that a 90-minute wordless Shakespeare could feel a tad "slow" and "long" in some scenes, including a curtain call that goes on for a VERY long time. (I appreciate creative curtain calls as long as they don't take any longer than a normal curtain call) It must also be noted that our experience was also diminished by a couple of audience factors. 1.) An executive member of the Synetic Company decided to sit in the back row and "start the laughs" at lots of moments that only she found funny, after having already encouraged the audience to laugh during the curtain speech. (it was noticed by everyone in our party as "too much, too loud and clearly forced") 2.) PLEASE leave your small children at home! Some woman brought a toddler to this production. It was intermittently fussy, crying and VERY distracting as it cruised the aisles saying "hello". We paid money to see a show, not listen to your kid remind you that he/she is too young for Shakespeare. This production is not a "children's show". That mother was completely out of line bringing her child to the production. Get a babysitter (like we did!) or stay home. Don't ruin everyone else's evenings. 3.) The Crystal City auditorium was clearly designed as a "lecture/conference hall", since it has a tiled sloped floor, rather than a carpeted tiered design. This fact was highlighted several times throughout the production by people dropping objects throughout the show. The cell phone signal in this underground theater isn't great anyway, put your cell phones away rather than holding them on your lap and allow them to drop multiple times during the production. Needless to say, our evening was marred by other audience members. We still liked the show, but the audience induced distractions last night were unbelievable. BTW - Our Goldstar seats for this production were much better than at King Arthur. They were in Row L in the center section, rather than closer but on the side. As with King Arthur several scenes included formation movement that was best viewed from the center of the audience.