Fast moving dream

6th October 1995 at 01:00
A MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM. Unicorn Theatre for Children, London WC2

The Unicorn continues its much appreciated Introducing Young Audiences to the Classics series with Andy Rashleigh's adaptation of A Midsummer Night's Dream.

While lacking the exhilarating ingenuity of the preceding production, The Magic Flute, it is a witty, pacy, and most of all, understandable way in to Shakespeare for those new to him. With the twists, turns and general convolutions of the story, this is no mean feat.

In Richard Williams and Kieron Smith's production, Bottom, played by Adam Stafford, steals the show hands down. This is as it should be. He has the best part in the play and actors from time immemorial have had a whale of a time with it. Stafford's own contribution is a cross between Bob Hoskins and The Archer's Jack Woolly - a good-natured megalomaniac with an unerring knack of making an ass of himself.

While the world of the faeries is a bit disappointing, not least for the austerity of costumes and set, the star-crossed lovers are a hit. Dressed nightmarishly in lurid tartans with pastel patent leather accessories, these are four young people whose attractions for each other may be beyond us, but whose extensive knicker-twisting about it all is a joy to behold In repertory with Adrian Mitchells's Tom Kitten and His Friends for three to five-year-olds until November 8. Tickets: 0171 836 3334.

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