|A Midsummer Night's Dream, Britten Theatre, London|
A darkened stage, a dozen imps in distressed doublets, a faint mist, a tang of sexual tension, a drowsy glissando and a heavy midsummer moon.
Lit by Mark Doubleday and conducted by Michael Rosewell, Ian Judge's exquisite production of A Midsummer Night's Dream for the Royal College of Music was an example of just how enchanting less-is-more can be.
No designer was credited. Indeed everything was done with lights, punked-up Elizabethan costumes, a bicycle, a dog, and the movements of a young and enthusiastic cast.
If the mortals were a little rough-hewn, Alistair Digges made a delightful Flute/Thisbe and Anna Huntley a touching Hermia. As Oberon, Christopher Lowrey delivered a beguiling "On this bank", while Colette Boushell brightly rat-a-tat-tatted Titania's coloratura. The ensemble work was excellent and Trinity Boys Choir lively and sweet of voice.
I don't know what happens to college productions after their brief end-of-term runs but, like Jo Davies's Cunning Little Vixen and Martin Lloyd-Evans's The King Goes Forth to France, Judge's Dream should be seen again. Independent on Sunday - July 2009