25 Jul Seeing More Clearly with the Eyes of Love – Stratford and London
We are delighted to announce two forthcoming presentations of ‘Seeing More Clearly with the Eyes of Love’, a new liturgy for voices based on A Midsummer Night’s Dream, composed to mark the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death.
A Midsummer Night’s Dream contains two significant references to the New Testament: Bottom’s misquoting of St Paul (‘The eye of man hath not heard, the ear of man hath not seen…’) and Bottom’s declaration taken from the Letter to the Ephesians (‘I assure you: the wall is down that parted their fathers’). In this ‘Liturgy for Voices’ these references are woven together with other excerpts from the play, words from the biblical poem ‘Song of Songs’, and elements from the traditional Christian liturgy to enable those present to explore Shakespeare’s own theme of clarifying the vision which belongs to love. The liturgy also includes five newly commissioned pieces from contemporary poets based on characters in the play: Laurence Sail (Titania), Michael Symmons Roberts (Demetrius), Sinead Morrissey (Puck), Micheal O’ Siadhail (Helena) and Jenny Lewis (Bottom); and the whole is intended to present an aspect of ‘Civic Shakespeare’, reflecting on the potentially transforming effect of love in civil society.