A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the spring

Lights, camera, action! Eureka High School’s theater club, etc…, recently finished their spring production of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, a Shakespearean romance and comedy.

The tech, crew and actors all play various different roles in making both the play and behind-the-scenes process run smoothly.

“This production follows three different groups, the lovers, the fairies, and rude mechanics, as they all have conflicts that take place in the same woods. Every role has its own unique plotline that’s intertwined into the story or with other characters. It’s a very comical production full of magic,” Maren Burns said.

Theater teacher, Justin Scheuer, shares how unique this Shakespearean masterpiece is in comparison with other plays performed at Eureka High School.

“This is a play within a play,” Scheuer said.

Avery Bengtson, 9, shares how her character’s personality causes trouble within the play.
“This play is about four lovers who run to the forest, the mischievous fairy, Puck, mistakenly ending up causing both guys to fall in love with one girl,” Bengtson said.

The process of choosing a play perfect for etc… is lengthy and takes many things into consideration.

“Last year I was thinking about our casting pool and I wanted to do Shakespeare, but also I thought we had the right actors and tech to be able to do this,” Scheuer said.

Scheuer chose to shorten the production into a two-hour production by shortening lines and cutting out monologues. Despite shortening the play, all the scenes from the original play were kept in and no scenes were cut.

A lot goes into a play between learning the parts, embracing the part, the tech, the lights and more. The most important part is when the entire production all comes together and problem solves to get the play show night ready.

Preparing for a production can be stressful, but both cast and crew have their own ways to manage anxiety. Avery Bengtson, 9, handles stress by staying busy and keeping her energy up.

“I always get super excited and nervous, but I remind myself of how much I love what I’m doing. I give myself a little mantra right before I step on stage, and of course, doing warmups like energy and shaking down with the whole cast before a performance is super fun and gets me excited,” Bengtson said.

Sarah Grossman, 9, has a lot to tackle as the sound crew leader but has a creative way to manage opening night stress.

“Opening night is always the most stressful, but eventually, I calm down by treating it like another dress rehearsal,” Grossman said.

Maren Burns, 9, the actress portraying Helena, explains how she chases after success through de-stressing.

“Before a show, I’m usually pretty nervous but in an exciting way, and it all settles down as soon as the curtain opens because I know my only job is to perform and have fun,” Burns said.

Burns further elaborates how her character’s dynamic personality causes trouble within the show.

“Helena is a part of “The Lovers” within the play. She is in love with Demetrius, meanwhile, Demetrius is in love with Hermia, Helena’s best friend. The love triangle gets more complicated as another character is in the mix: Lysander. Lysander and Hermia are in love and want to get married. Helena spends most of the show chasing after Demetrius as he continues to fight for Hermia. Helena is a very dramatic, sensitive, and expressive person. I relate to her in the sense that we both show our emotions and tend to be pretty open books,” Burns said.

Avery Bengtson, 9, who is playing Puck, has connected with her character, bringing her to life on the stage.

“The mischievous fairy, Puck, mistakenly ends up causing both guys to fall in love with one girl. Puck is also helping her master, Oberon, play a trick on the fairy queen, Titania,” Bengtson said.“My favorite part is my monologue at the end, where I get to close the show and I just enjoy getting to interact with all the other characters on stage,” Bengtson said.

Etc’s… Production of “A Midsummer’s Night Dream” is a tale of love, heartbreak and comedy that had Eureka High School feeling immersed into the enchanted woods of Shakespeare’s creation.