On Tuesday afternoon and evening, Year 7 students enjoyed the glorious sunshine and a trip to the National Trust property at Hinton Ampner to explore the gardens and then watch a vibrant, contemporary production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Here, Mr Bowyer, our Head of English, tells us about the event.
We arrived at Hinton Ampner to be greeted by Jess (a former Embley student who now works for the National Trust) who had arranged ice creams for the students before they completed the Rose Challenge and the Ancient Tree Trail around the gardens. We reserved seats in front of the stage and ate a special tea, prepared by the catering staff. Many Year 7 parents also joined us for the evening, bringing their own picnics.
The production itself was a wonderfully accessible take on Shakespeare’s comedy, featuring mobile phones, media announcements and dance sequences to modern songs. The acting was impressive, with ingenious switching between roles and costumes and careful, funny choreographing of the lovers’ scenes.
The Rude Mechanicals’ performance of Pyramus and Thisbe was also hilarious, with some students weeping with mirth all the way home. The actors were kind enough to let us take a picture on stage after the play, with them in the background.