Links to Shakespeare 2

This day my oaths of drinking wine and going to plays are out, and so I do resolve to take a liberty to-day, and then to fall to them again. To the King’s Theatre, where we saw “Midsummer’s Night’s Dream,” which I had never seen before, nor shall ever again, for it is the most insipid ridiculous play that ever I saw in my life. I saw, I confess, some good dancing and some handsome women, which was all my pleasure

Samuel Pepys, Diary,Sept. 29, 1662


Some famous quotes from the play:

For aught that I could ever read, Could ever hear by tale or history, The course of true love never did run smooth. . Act i. Sc. 1.

O, hell! to choose love by another’s eyes. Act i. Sc. 1.

Swift as a shadow, short as any dream; Brief as the lightning in the collied night, That in a spleen unfolds both heaven and earth, And ere a man hath power to say, “Behold!” The jaws of darkness do devour it up: So quick bright things come to confusion. Act i. Sc. 1.

Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind; And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind. Act i. Sc.1

And the imperial votaress passed on, In maiden meditation, fancy-free. Yet mark’d I where the bolt of Cupid fell: It fell upon a little western flower, Before milk-white, now purple with love’s wound, And maidens call it love-in-idleness. Act ii. Sc. 1.

I ’ll put a girdle round about the earth In forty minutes. Act ii. Sc. 1.

I know a bank where the wild thyme blows, Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows, Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine, With sweet musk-roses and with eglantine. Act ii. Sc. 1.

So we grew together, Like to a double cherry, seeming parted, But yet an union in partition. . Act iii/sc 2

I have had a dream, past the wit of man to say what dream it was. Act iv. Sc. 1.

The eye of man hath not heard, the ear of man hath not seen, 8 man’s hand is not able to taste, his tongue to conceive, nor his heart to report, what my dream was. . Act iv. Sc. 1.

The lunatic, the lover, and the poet Are of imagination all compact: One sees more devils than vast hell can hold, That is, the madman: the lover, all as frantic, Sees Helen’s beauty in a brow of Egypt: The poet’s eye, in a fine frenzy rolling, Doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven; And as imagination bodies forth The forms of things unknown, the poet’s pen Turns them to shapes, and gives to airy nothing A local habitation and a name. Such tricks hath strong imagination, That if it would but apprehend some joy, It comprehends some bringer of that joy; Or in the night, imagining some fear, How easy is a bush supposed a bear! Act v. Sc. 1.

The Dreaming Poster 2

Key information:

Text: Charles Hart

Instrumentation: piano, 2 synthesizers, saxophone/clarinet, recorder/crumhorn, percussion & double bass

Première: August 2001, Northcott Theatre, Exeter: National Youth Music Theatre

Availability: Performance materials available on hire (; rights licensed by Faber Music Copyright Dept (

Song list