86.8 F
Cruz Bay
Wednesday, October 5, 2022


This play at Coral World is brought to us by the Midsummer Night's Dream summer camp. This worthy effort included a cast of some 23 talented St. Thomas youths; a gaggle of fathers, mothers and friends; and William Shakespeare. The production will be repeated Saturday evening at 8 p.m.
In all the years of my childhood, one of the most fun and rewarding efforts I ever participated in was youth theater.
In Santa Barbara we took theater very seriously and there were many opportunities for participation in almost any particular form of theater you could imagine. My best parts included the river boat captain in Showboat, a Mexican cowboy in Rio Rita, and an Italian fruit peddler in La Boheme.
Showboat was my first speaking part and I got to take command of the theater for one exciting minute with my single spoken work "All Aboard!" Rio Rita was most memorable because I was working for one of the west coast greats Richard Wagner, and my stage partner fell in love with me (until she found out my driver's license was a learners permit).
There is simply something grand about crossing a line and becoming someone else, if only for a couple of hours. Someone totally removed from your daily hum drum existence. Putting reality behind you for a couple of hours and taking on a new persona. Doing things you will never have the opportunity to do in real life. Like sitting on a swing, hung from a quarter moon and singing about "my boy Bill."
The midsummer night's cast appeared to range from seven or eight years old to 20 plus. The majority of the children appeared to be enjoying their first ever play before a paying audience; even if most of us were related to one actor or another.
The Coral World venue was really quite good. The actors played on the raised amphitheater. The fact so many young people could learn their roles so well in such a short time is truly amazing. With a shortage of males, the tables were turned on the all male Elizabethan theater, and our theater had most of the male parts played by females.
When I saw what the Pistarckle Theater had wrought, I was immediately transported through time and once more overwhelmed with what young people can accomplish. Rose Jensen, the ferries queen and soon to be Hofstra freshman, played her part with grace and maturity. Her ferry court consisted of eight true sprites. One of their roles was to make soap bubbles and they went at it with a vengeance, yet nary a giggle.
The star-crossed lovers were preteens shouting their lines of undying love with emotion and verve. Helena, played by Nathalie Monsanto, did a major job searching for true love. The players were led by a most enthusiastic Peter Quince played with dimples and the most charming of smiles by Liyah Tangia Tonge. But of all the players, by far the audience favorite was Nick Bottom played by Torri Kappelman. Kappelman played every line with total abandon letting one and all know she was thoroughly into her part.
By Saturday night the bugs should all be worked out although it was difficult to discern many. Probably the biggest problem of the evening was the lack of an open snack bar. I was assured that problem was a snafu and would be attended to.
We went to support our friends' and neighbors' children. We stayed after because it had been such an enjoyable evening we didn't want to break the spell. Call, make reservations, go early to shmooze with friends, and settle in for a dream of an evening — a midsummer night's dream.

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