Royal Shakespeare Company finds UK’s ‘best Bottoms’
By Tim Masters
Arts and entertainment correspondent
24 June 2015
From the section Entertainment & Arts
A Midsummer Night’s Dream: A Play for the Nation will tour the UK and feature on BBC One
For amateur actors across the country, it is a dream come true.
The Royal Shakespeare Company has announced that 14 local theatre groups will join a company of professionals on a national tour of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
Over 12 weeks, 84 amateur actors will play the Mechanicals, the bungling labourers who put on a play for a wedding celebration.
The tour kicks off in Stratford-upon Avon, Warwickshire, in February 2016.
The RSC’s Erica Whyman, who will direct A Midsummer Night’s Dream: A Play for the Nation, said Shakespeare’s comedy was “a very affectionate and fitting way to celebrate amateur actors everywhere”.
In theatres across the UK, the local amateur company will share the stage with 18 professional actors, while Titania’s fairy train will be played by local schoolchildren.
Like their Shakespearean counterparts, the amateurs playing “rude Mechanicals” – Quince, Bottom, Flute, Starveling, Snout and Snug – have a range of professions.
In Glasgow Bottom owns an estate agency, while the one in Truro is a rugby coach.
Canterbury’s Bottom is a government worker.
A primary school head plays Snout in Belfast and Snug is a painter and decorator.
Cardiff’s Flute works for the railway and Snout works in a patisserie.
In London, Snug is a private hire driver and Quince a GP.
Source:: BBC Entertainment