Midsummer Night’s Dream at the Mansion

Chailey Estate, Newburyport MA

A guided tour of the estate grounds, with sound and performance by Crank Sturgeon, Steve Norton, Junko Fujiwara, Kit Demos, Walter Wright, Michael Dailey Jr, Reed Altemus, Valerie Kuehne, Eric Dahlman, and Gregory Kowalski.

Woodland fairy attire is appropriate, but load up on bug spray.

What, Shakespeare? Oh, no no no – that’s that story with a bunch of broads whose greatest ambition is to get hitched. However, it was based on the known fact that there’s other communities – in nature, in time, in space – that have different goals and schedules than we have, and sometimes we walk in on an event that just isn’t what it looks like. Or sounds like. This takes more from Strawberry Hill and Horace Walpole, who feted his gothic fancy with a horse drawn ride through the woods under a full moon, timpanis echoing in the distance, a break in the trees revealing the artfully manufactured ruined tower of his abbey, and a dwarf at the gate because dammit it wasn’t imposing enough at 6 meters or whatever. I admit I can’t place my hands on the book where I read this, but let’s all pretend to be tickled pink that June 23rd, although a Sunday, is the Strawberry Moon. We’ll be celebrating it with references to the older other communities – Sheila na Gig, the Green Man, the spirits of the forest whose names can be dropped by any fantasy reader of dense book list and thumbed copies of Bullfinch.

Raw footage courtesy of Rat Bastard