Deena C. Bouknight – Contributing Writer
Roberta Pipitone would like to see a community theatre thrive in Macon County. Last year, the 30-year theatre teacher and professional actress and director assisted with the fall 2018 production of “Murder by the Book.” This year, Pipitone is directing a cast of 18, with 10 backstage assistants, in the Shakespeare comedy “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” opening Friday, Aug. 2.
The Macon County Public Library is host to the performance, offered Aug. 2-4 and again the following weekend, Aug. 9-11. Friday and Saturday performances are in the evenings, while the Sunday performances are scheduled for 2 p.m. Donations to the library are encouraged, but there is no charge, and “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” is offered to the public on a first-come-first-serve basis as 60 seats are available for each show.
Pipitone, who hails originally from California, has been living in the Franklin area for two years. She said that although it takes “a massive amount of time” to direct a play, she hopes the library will allow for at least one performance annually. Actors audition for each part. Pipitone said Shakespeare was chosen for a few reasons.
“I’m a big fan … very much so, but it’s also one of the easiest of the Shakespeare plays to manipulate in terms of cast requirements and the stage. Plus, it’s one of the most accessible … the audience doesn’t have to understand every word to enjoy the story and the humor.”
The comedy, written by William Shakespeare around 1595, portrays events surrounding the marriage of Theseus, the Duke of Athens, to Hippolyta, the former queen of the Amazons. Considered one of Shakespeare’s more popular plays that has been performed for centuries worldwide, the story is set in a forest and also includes the whimsical adventures of four young Athenian lovers and a group of six amateur actors, who are controlled and manipulated by fairies.
“The goal of Theatre at the Library is to develop community theatre experiences that involve local actors of varying skill levels and experience,” said Pipitone.
The library is located at 149 Siler Farm Road, Franklin. For more information, call (828)524-3600.