On the 30th May 2016, the BBC aired the latest adaptation of a renowned play: A Midsummer Night’s Dream created by Doctor Who’s Russell T Davies.
This 90-minute spectacular is now available to own on DVD and Blu-ray.
First conceived by William Shakespeare as a comedic play in the 1590’s, the story survives today in all its glory. Met with stellar reviews, a host of Doctor Who alumina were itching to honour Shakespeare. The adaptation is chiefly led by the wonderful writing of Russell T Davies. Not only this but Doctor Who music mogul Murray Gold returns. Additionally, Doctor Who producer Nikki Wilson and the Doctor Who visual effects crew chip in to deliver a masterful adaptation.
But it’s not just those from behind the camera that have returned to work with Davies.
From as recently as last years Christmas special are two Doctor Who cast members acting in Davies’ adaptation. Nonso Anozie, who portrays ‘Oberon’ in the production, chillingly voiced Hydroflax’s body in ‘The Husbands of River Song’. Furthermore, Matt Lucas who made his Doctor Who debut in the same episode plays the character ‘Bottom’. Lucas is also set to return to the TARDIS from the outset of the upcoming series 10.
Davies also included talent from his era of Doctor Who. Richard Wilson appeared in the terrifying 2005 two-parter ‘The Empty Child’ and ‘The Doctor Dances’ as Doctor Constantine. Now, Wilson works portrays Starveling, an amateur actor and troubled tailor facing a daunting final performance. Furthermore, from 2008’s series 4 episode ‘The Sontaran Stratagem’ comes Eleanor Matsuura, who played ‘Jo Nakashima’, an ill-fated journalist. In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Matsuura portrays Hippolyta, a ferocious warrior forced into an unwanted marriage.
Topping off the list is fan-favourite Bernard Cribbins. Cribbins characterised Wilfred Mott from his debut in the 2007 Christmas Special ‘Voyage of the Damned’. The character then reappeared throughout the 2008 series and ended as the final companion of the Tenth Doctor. Cribbins will delight audiences as Snout, a tinker and mechanical from the infamous play within a play.
Also part of the cast are Maxine Peake (Silk, The Village) as Titania, John Hannah (The Mummy, Spartacus) as Theseus, Hiran Abeysekera (Lion In The Tent) as Puck and award-winning stage star Elaine Paige (Follies, Sweeney Todd) as Mistress Quince.
The adaptation is directed by David Kerr, produced by Nikki Wilson and executive produced by Russell T. Davies, Faith Penhale and Brian Minchin.
For fans of Davies and Doctor Who, A Midsummer Night’s Dream is quite clearly a must buy on DVD. It is easy to understand why Radio Times referred to the adaptation as: ‘Shakespeare reimagined for the Who generation’. After all, with the titans of the Who crew gathered, Shakespeare is in safe hands – surely safer than he was when in The Doctor’s company against the Carrionites anyway!
A Midsummer Night’s Dream is available now from Amazon.co.uk. Click on the images below.