Secret Shakespeare

The stage is set for an upcoming production of “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” at Green Canyon High School, with one twist — only the director knows who all the actors are. Actors haven’t rehearsed together or been told who’s playing other parts.

For the past seven weeks, around two dozen community and student actors have been secretly preparing for a one-night showing of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” Along with the community, each of the actors have been kept in the dark as to who makes up the rest of the cast. However, all will be revealed on Saturday night at 7 p.m. at the Green Canyon High School Theatre.

David Sidwell, the drama teacher at Green Canyon, said he got the idea from a community theater in Portland.

“The actors just stood up from the audience, spoke their first lines and then ran to the stage for the rest of the show,” Sidwell said. “I thought it was amazing.”

Sidwell said he hopes for the same kind of magic in this Green Wolf production. He said there was a big turnout for the secret auditions in November, and the actors who have been cast are both nervous and excited for this acting challenge.

“You have to be pretty brave to audition and to want to be in this kind of show, but mostly I think everyone is pretty excited to finally find out who is who,” Sidwell said. “This is certainly an actor-centered production where the actors really get to show their skills.”

The actors have met with Sidwell one-on-one to get some direction, but his instructions remain vague as he leaves many things up to the actor’s personal interpretation. For example, when meeting with an actor on Tuesday morning, Sidwell simply showed them which side of the stage the fairies will be on and which side is for the humans.

“It’ll be fun to see the actors use their skills on the run, without me having to say, ‘Don’t do that,’ or, ‘Stand over there,’” Sidwell said.

While script is already filled with animals, fairies and interlacing love stories, Sidwell said keeping the actors separate and secret will add some impressive improvisation and interpretations throughout the course of the play.

“It’s just going to be so fun and startling to see the audience’s reaction to each of these actors. I wish I could tell you who they are, but it’s a secret,” Sidwell said with a chuckle.

Green Canyon High School Theatre is located at 2960 Wolfpack Way, North Logan. The play begins at 7 p.m. and tickets are $10 at the door.

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