Breakneck Midsummer Night’s Dream

Breakneck Midsummer Night’s Dream





  • “Once again Timothy Mooney (here with five friends) makes a case for why Shakespeare should always be 60 minutes long, in this really fun and faithful adaptation of the Bard’s most popular comedy.” – Cherry and Spoon
  • “Shakespeare’s most beloved play! A dose of Renaissance Viagra! Three couples vault their way into the marriage bed via this whirlwind tale of Romantic Rivalry, Fairy Ribaldry, Love Potions… and an Ass!” – Minnesota Theater Love


 Audience reactions


  • “Expertly done and lots of fun! Doing a 2 hour Shakespearian comedy with six performers in 59 minutes? Here’s what you’ll need: 1) a smart cutting, 2) skilled performers who can create and switch characters quickly; 3) people whose diction is flawless, so that you can catch as much of the dialogue as possible; 4) since it’s a comedy; they’d better have good timing and physical comedic skills. This show has all of these things, and it’s a delightful hour in the theatre.” -Daniel Pinkerton
  • “Fun, Silly, and Awesome! You NEED to see this show!! I really love how well this show flows and how well the cast works together to present the speed version of the best Shakespeare show ever!” -Joy MacArthur

  • “Tim has amazed audiences for years with his one-man shows condensing Shakespearean epics down to the 59:59, so it felt like I was witnessing something truly magical at his ensemble cast of Midsummer Night’s Dream when his repertory company blossomed into a cast of six…I am so excited to see Tim’s repertory company take this next step. I suspect even bigger things are on the horizon for him, and I’ll be there in the front row when that happens. If you love the Bard, you owe it to yourself to witness this clever and expertly-executed take on one of his best. Congratulations, Mooney and crew!” -Michael Shaeffer
  • “The story rolls along, the poetry flows, the rough tradesmen’s play-within-a-play leaves us laughing, and Puck’s magic enchants. Every one of the half dozen actors moves among multiple roles so seamlessly that this itself seems magical, but of course it’s a sign of remarkable direction, skillful acting, and thorough preparation.” -Susan Shearing


About the Show

Tim explains, “Every time I put one of these ‘Breakneck’ plays together, I find myself ‘reaching inside Shakespeare’s head’ to understand just what he was trying to express. This time around, Shakespeare did NOT want me playing every role! (He even makes fun of an actor who wants to play every role with the unrepentant ham actor, ‘Bottom.’ …I do, at least, get to play Bottom, as an in-joke at my own expense.) But this play is all about the coupling and uncoupling of romantic partners under the influence of fairies, potions and spells. I really did NEED other bodies on-stage along with me, racing on and off amid a whirlwind of confusion, evoking the exciting sexual rivalry that underlies this play which is very tied to gender and to the audience’ ongoing awareness of just who is chasing whom.”
Ironically, even now, 430 years later, “Midsummer” is showing up on censorship lists! The state of Florida tried to ban Midsummer Night’s Dream from schools, but only barely re-approved it “for grades 10-12 only.” Tim notes, “We, at least will not shut ANYBODY out from attending, but I fully expect the state of Florida would have ISSUES with all the sexy fun we’ve been exploring in this play!!” (What’s the big issue? Well, a male performer, in drag, plays the female “Thisby” and Titania, the queen of the fairies, seems to enjoy intimate relations with a donkey… or as Shakespeare repeats at great length… “an ass.”)

About the Author

Timothy Mooney, author of the acting textbook, Acting at the Speed of Life; Conquering Theatrical Style, has given thousands of students their first introduction to Molière through his one-man play, Molière Than Thou, drawn from his seventeen rhymed variations of Molière’s plays, published and presented around the world. Now operating as the “Timothy Mooney Repertory Theatre,” Tim has added another dozen one-man plays to the mix, including SIX “Breakneck” Shakespeare plays, with plans to continue on through the entire canon (thanks, greatly, to the help of a generous grant from the Christel DeHaan Family Founation). Tim has created a video home for these shows at!