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'Midsummer Circus' opens this week

Lakeridge Junior High creates updated version of Shakespeare's classic


by: REVIEW PHOTO: JILLIAN DALEY - Lakeridge Junior High students rehearse scenes from Midsummer Circus: from left, back row: Jenna Wilson and Anna Garrison; and front row: Jessica McIver, Amadea Bortoli and Matty McComish.A Lakeridge Junior High School teacher threaded together a host of elements — aerial silks, “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” and clowns — to weave a fresh production of a Shakespearean classic.

Amy Gretencort’s “Midsummer Circus,” takes the Bard’s well-known romantic comedy about mischievous fairies and royal disputes, and transforms it into a modern-day escapade featuring clowns and “aeries” instead of fairies. Gretencort said it took her about a month to put the revised play together.

Opening night Feb. 27 coincides with the second annual Arts Night, a fundraiser for the school’s visual and performing arts programs featuring a gallery of Lakeridge Junior High students’ creative works and live music. by: REVIEW PHOTO: JILLIAN DALEY - Aerial silks are an integral part of the upcoming Lakeridge Junior High show, and eighth-grader Matty McComish is getting some practice in.

Eighth-grader Anna Garrison is Tania, a play on the original fairy queen’s name, Titania, and Anna said her favorite part is the scene in which Tania falls for a former clown who’s taken an animal’s form.

“They put a spell on me, and I fall in love with a donkey,” Anna said.

Transformed clown Asino, a role eighth-grader Matty McComish takes on, is Tania’s bewitching, four-legged love.

“It’s creative,” Matty said. “I think the audience will enjoy it because it’s kind of romantic in a way.”

The students have been practicing with the aerial silks for weeks, and the scenes are full of sparkle.

“There’s a lot of glitter,” Anna said.

If you go

The play is accompanied by Arts Night at 6 p.m. Feb. 27, and the cost is $7 per ticket that night. The play continues at 7 p.m. Feb. 28, March 6 and March 7, and it is $5 per ticket on these nights.

For more information, call 503-534-2343.

Jillian Daley can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and 503-636-1281, ext. 109. Follow her on Twitter, @jilliandaley.



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