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August 30th: Double Dramatae

The cast of Shakespeare and Company's current production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream"
courtesy of Shakespeare and Company
The cast of Shakespeare and Company's current production of "A Midsummer Night's Dream"

Summer is a time when dramatic pursuits envelop our area.

But before we make our way to the stage, perhaps we should take a longer look at the things on the page and how we pronounce them. Word nerd and senior editor at Merriam-Webster, Emily Brewster draws our attention to the many ways we can say the letters "AE" together, as although its origins are clearly Latin, the diphthong has evolved to sound many ways for many folx in as many contexts.

Historic Northampton is turning its revamped barn into a stage and taking folx through several centuries of Northampton history with a collection of short plays running this weekend. The performance, entitled "Pulling Up the Roots" looks at three distinct but important moments and figures from the area over the years. Historic Northampton's Betty Sharpe, and playwright Patrick Gabridge join us to talk about the importance of collaborations like these to make the past more present for the people living now.

And speaking of old language, Shakespeare and Companyin Lenox is heading toward the end of it's run of A Midsummer Night's Dream. Perhaps the bard's most irreverent play, it provides a surprisingly blank canvas for cast and crew alike to stamp their styles upon. We speak with director of training, Sheila Bandyopadhyay, who plays "Puck" in the production, about the ongoing relatability of this particular play, and the equity that pervades their vision of it.

Christopher “Monte'' Belmonte is host and executive producer of NEPM's The Fabulous 413. He was born and raised in Massachusetts and has been a radio host in western Massachusetts for the last 20 years — the last 17 of them as host of Mornings with Monte on The River 93.9/WRSI.
Kaliis Smith is a radio host and producer for NEPM's The Fabulous 413. She was most recently host and producer at The River 93.9/WRSI where she appeared on Mornings with Monte for the Nerdwatch segment and hosted weekday evenings.