Credit: Courtesy of Forced Entertainment

 It was only fitting to perform A Midsummer Night’s Dream on the last weekend of the solstice season. Forced Entertainment’s Jerry Killick brought the famous Shakespeare story to life on Sunday, September 20 during its Table Top Shakespeare segment featured on UCSB’s Arts & Lectures webpage. 

 Although like many other events this year, these Table Top Shakespeare productions are presented virtually, Killick found a way to transport all of us home-bound spectators to ancient Athens, where the Duke, played by a beer stein, announces his engagement to the queen of the Amazons, Hippolyta, who was portrayed by a simple silver cup. The Duke expresses his desire to have a large party, one that all of the young people in Athens will want to attend. Unlike for us present-day folks, this get together didn’t involve fabric masks that our great aunt mailed us, or standing six feet apart. Instead, Athens’ citizens—Egeus, Hermia, Demetrius and Lysander—interrupt the plans for such a celebration to settle a family debate: who will Egeus’ daughter Hermia marry? Will it be Demetrius or Lysander, both played by flower vases? Killick does a tremendous job of summing up the drawn-out argument between the vases. Meanwhile, the fair folk of the magical wooded Athens, are in the middle of their own familial quarrel.

The latter are played by various whiskey and gin bottles who find themselves involved with the kitchen glass ware. Eventually they make their way around the kitchen table until all the household supplies kiss and make up… comical, yet entirely accurate. The “Complete Works: Table Top Shakespeare” series ends on November 15, but past shows can be found on Forced Entertainment’s website at

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