Part of the 15th season of Penfold, Penfold in the Park returns with a joyful reimagining of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream placing all 21 characters in the hands of 4 virtuosic performers for a free night of fun for the whole family! 

Back for the 10th year of Penfold in the Park! As Lysandra and Hermia flee Athens’ oppressive laws into a forest full of meddlesome fairies, will love come out on top?

This new spin on the classic story places all 21 characters in the hands of 4 virtuosic performers for a free night of fun for the whole family!

Penfold in the Park is free outdoor theatre provided in partnership with the City of Round Rock.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream allows Penfold to re-start the Penfold in the Park tradition with a fun, playful production in keeping with Penfold’s new aim to reimagine classic works. The play will be the 10th installment of Penfold in the Park and the first at a new time – fall, rather than summer – for a more pleasant audience experience.

The October run time also provides crossover opportunities with other Round Rock arts organizations since several major events take place at that time, including Chalk Walk and Dia de los Muertos.

Finally, the production advances Penfold’s inclusion goals by showcasing the work of an ascending, local queer director, Rosalind Faires (Theatre Guild on the Air, A Miracle on 34th Street Classic Radiocast) and a variety of gender pairings represented in the play’s six romantic couples.

In this most beloved of Shakespeare’s comedies, Lysandra loves Hermia, Hermia loves Lysandra, Demetrius loves Hermia, Helenus loves Demetrius, and no one loves Helenus (poor Helenus).

When the members of this tangled love quadrangle lose themselves in a magical forest one midsummer evening, a band of mischievous fairies playing loose with a certain love potion catapult the romance, confusion and fun to an enchanted new level!

Add a pair of warring fairy courts, a donkey head and a troupe of enthusiastically inept actors – then place all 21 roles in the capable hands of 4 virtuosic performers – and you’ll be howling along with the characters, “Lord, what fools these mortals be!”

The cast includes Yunina Barbour Payne (A War of the Worlds) as Titania, Lysandra, Quince, etc., Taylor Flanagan (Henry V) as Puck, Hermia, Snug, etc., Dane Parker (A War of the Worlds) as Oberon, Demetrius, Flute, etc., and Kevin Percival (Control Group) as Bottom, Helenus, Theseus, etc. 

Rosalind Faires/Director, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Taylor Flanagan/Actor, A Midsummer Night’s Dream came on to talk to Studio 512 about the production.

Midsummer Night’s Dream runs September 29 – October 16, 2022 | Thursday through Sunday at 7:30 pm; No Performance Oct 9. This event is free but donations are appreciated!

ROSALIND FAIRES (Director and adaptor) is an Austin-based director and actor. She was the 2016 recipient of Capital T Theatre’s New Directions fellowship and was nominated for Outstanding Direction by the Austin Critics’ Table Award for her production of Marie Antoinette. Regional directing credits include: Running Bear (Hyde Park Theatre), A Miracle on 34th Street Classic Radiocast (Penfold Theatre), Passage (Heartland Theatre Collective), Ghosts (Gateway Theatre Project), Tiny Beautiful Things (Austin Playhouse), Sense and Sensibility (assistant director, Dallas Theater Center) and Macbeth (Rude Fusion). She received dual degrees in Plan II Honors and Theatre and Dance from The University of Texas at Austin.  

TAYLOR FLANAGAN (Puck, Hermia, etc.) is an award-winning, local performer and budding playwright. She has been performing for 25 years and is also an avid theatre-goer: usually seeing upwards of 50 shows a year. She was recently nominated for a BIP Award for Outstanding Lead Performer in a Drama for her portrayal of all the roles in Judith at Hyde Park Theatre. She has performed in the last three productions of Penfold in the Park and is delighted to finally perform these high-energy, outdoor shows in a more temperate season. When not onstage, she is an ASL interpreter and works on Penfold’s marketing team. She earned a BA in Spanish at the University of Texas at Austin and studied ASL Interpreting at ACC.