The very popular Rude Mechanical Theatre Company will be coming back to Winchelsea at St Thomas’ Primary School playing field this summer on Sunday June 24 with their new play, Oberon’s Cure. It will be their 20th year of touring. The play is an imagined prequel to Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, based on Titania’s accusation during that play that her husband Oberon has had an affair with “this bouncing Amazon”, Hippolyta.
It is basically about an old man who is not capable of resisting a beautiful young woman. Now when hasn’t that been in the news recently? But he is made to look ridiculous by his inadequacy – and the foolish lack of self-awareness makes him into a sad, pathetic individual. But there is forgiveness, too, as Titania teaches him a lesson and appeals to him to grow old gracefully (with her and not to be always chasing after girls).
But do we want to grow old gracefully? It is an old story, which people will recognise and laugh at because of its familiarity. There are things to admire too: Hippolyta’s wiliness as she wraps Oberon round her little finger and Briony’s child-like, innocent, but tough, determination to work out the confusion of life and emerge as a young woman.
The performance starts at 7:30pm, but the audience can arrive from 6pm with picnics. Bring your own low-backed chairs and warm clothes. Tickets are available online from the Rude Mechanicals website or locally from Hilary Roome on 07923 451431. You won’t want to miss this funny, romantic and rather poetic offering from the Rudes.
Photo: Rude Mechanical Theatre Company