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Getting into character is fun for Northwestern State theatre student
Nov 08, 2012 | 525 views | 0 0 comments | 3 3 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Timothy Callais of Baton Rouge (Nick Bottom) left and Nina Breeland of Ruston (Titania) are part of the cast of A Midsummer Night’s Dream that will be presented at Northwestern State University Nov. 7 – 11 in the A.A. Fredericks Auditorium.
Timothy Callais of Baton Rouge (Nick Bottom) left and Nina Breeland of Ruston (Titania) are part of the cast of A Midsummer Night’s Dream that will be presented at Northwestern State University Nov. 7 – 11 in the A.A. Fredericks Auditorium.
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You get the feeling Nina Breeland will be sad to see the Northwestern State University Theatre and Dance production of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream come to an end on Sunday because she appears to be having so much fun getting to portray someone else.

Breeland, a junior musical theatre major from Ruston, plays Titania, the queen of the fairies in the play, which will be performed Nov. 7-11 in the A.A. Fredericks Auditorium. Curtain time is 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 7-10 with a 2 p.m. matinee on Nov. 11.

Director Andrew Lewis has shifted the setting for A Midsummer Night’s Dream, placing the characters in 19th century colonial India. The play chronicles the adventures of four young lovers and a group of amateur actors including their interactions with a duke, a duchess and mythical creatures.

“I love playing the character. When I play her, it is like I am stepping into someone completely different than me,” said Breeland. “I am drawing on all of the authority figures I have known in my life, both male and female. I see her as kind of evil, but publicly she is very seductive.”

Breeland said Titania appears to be focused on one thing.

“Every day in rehearsal, our director asks us to find our focal point and determine what our character wants,” said Breeland. “Every day I think that she wants to win. Both she and her husband Oberon are fighting over a changeling child, and it is important to her that she upsets Oberon. At first, the welfare of the child isn’t that important. She just wants to come out ahead.”

As the play nears its conclusion, Titania undergoes a change when the spell cast upon her by Oberon’s servant Puck wears off.

“After the spell is taken off her, Titania concludes that who wins doesn’t matter any more,” said Breeland. “She decides both she and Oberon are parents of the child and at the end they are all a family.”

Breeland said while learning the play, she soon understood why it has been popular for more than 500 years.

“The play delves into so many worlds,” she said. “It goes into a fantasy world and fantasies have always been popular. It also has royalty and people are interested in royalty. Every world in the play has love, and that is something which is timeless.”

Breeland has appeared in The Importance of Being Earnest, the ballet Alice in Wonderland and the annual Christmas Gala. She is also a member of two choruses, the University Singers and NSU Lyric Women.

“One day I saw a poster advertising Northwestern’s theatre and dance program and I decided to look into it,” she said. “I was able to successfully audition for both choir and theatre and take advantage of the scholarships that are available.”

Breeland would like to go into musical theatre after graduating. She plans to work on cruise ships with the objective of one day performing on Broadway. Being part of NSU’s program has been a big help to her in reaching that goal.

“I had done singing and acting, but I hadn’t done any dancing before I came here,” said Breeland. “Dance is such an important part of musical theatre. I had no idea what I was getting into, but I absolutely love it.”

Tickets are $15 for adults, $12 for children and senior citizens. Northwestern State, BPCC@NSU and Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts students are admitted free with a current student I.D. Tickets can be purchased online at theatre.nsula.edu. For more information, call (318) 357-4483.



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