Offensive Shadows (2007)
by Paul Dunn
Tarragon Theatre Extra Space
Winner of the SummerWorks 2007 NOW Magazine Audience Choice Award
A critical and popular smash (it won the NOW Magazine Audience Choice Award), Paul Dunn’s sexy and darkly comic contemporary sequel to A Midsummer Night’s Dream explores what happens when Demetrius, Helena, Hermia and Lysander finally wake up.
Artfully blending the romantic heart of Shakespeare’s classic with a modern sensibility, Dunn (High-Gravel-Blind for the Stratford Festival and BOYS for Theatre Direct Canada) uses an edgy mix of humour and pathos to explore an uncertain future, where magic can’t always save the day.
Featuring a critically acclaimed cast, and expertly directed by Michael Shamata, Offensive Shadows delighted Shakespeare novices and aficionados alike. NOW Magazine’s SummerWorks 2007 wrap-up listed Offensive Shadows among the Outstanding New Plays, Productions and Ensembles of the festival.
DIRECTED BY Michael Shamata
FEATURING Jessica Greenberg, Mark McGrinder, Jason Mitchell & Kimwun Perehinec
STAGE MANAGER Michael Haltrecht
LIGHTING DESIGN Michael Walton
FIGHT DIRECTION Joel Harris
WHAT CAME NEXT
In 2008, again at the Tarragon, Studio 180 remounted the original work along with a new companion piece for Puck, set in a world that no longer believes in fairies. The National Post listed Offensive Shadows among the best new Canadian plays of 2008.
“Performance and direction are pitch-perfect.”
“The cast is terrific, turning from comedy to heartbreak in a convincing moment.”
“Highly recommended… a clever, imaginative romp that is augmented by a particularly likeable and capable cast.”
“The show’s a winner, both in its writing and its performance.”
NNNN NOW MAGAZINE
“Paul Dunn’s witty script is engaging and emotionally satisfying.”
“Paul Dunn’s bleak, wildly funny little comedy sports an articulate understanding of the original Shakespearean characters as he transplants them into a contemporary milieu ripe with camping gear, bonfires and bikinis… Beautifully played with comic finesse and great physical agility…. Michael Shamata’s direction is fast-paced and physically thrilling.”
“A delightful romp in two acts, under the direction of Michael Shamata, who quite wisely keeps things simple… focusing his and our attention on the expert performers at the heart of his tale.”