My daughter must try-out for a class production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream this week. It is a fifth-grade tradition. Each student has been asked to submit a list of the “top three” roles for which she would like to be considered. My daughter is not enthused. Here is her list:
(1) one of Titania’s fairies (who just says “I am Peaseblossom”);
(2) “the guy who plays the Lion” in the Mechanicals’ play-within-a-play because “all he has to do is roar;” and
(3) the Little Indian Boy (who is the subject of the dispute between Titania and Oberon but who never appears on stage).
Ach! How can that be? “Beshrew that heart that makes my heart to groan/ For that deep wound [she] gives” to me! [Sonnet 133]
Then again, I must take comfort knowing that it isn’t that my daughter dislikes Shakespeare. She actually loves memorizing sonnets and monologues and then showing over her wondrous feats of mental retention. But she likes to do so in the comfort of her OWN HOME. In other words, it isn’t Shakespeare but performing Shakespeare (or much of anything) that she dislikes.
So I should get over it. But this is kind of like being a trial lawyer whose kid is required to participate in a mock trial and that kid says she would be willing to be:
(1) the fourth-chair attorney whose job it is to refill the water pitchers at counsel table;
(2) the bailiff; or
(3) a child of a person related to someone whose wrongful death was allegedly caused by the product at issue in the mock case—but who never appears in the courtroom.