Midsummer Night's Dream

Performance Details

  • When April 25-May 5, 2024
  • where Lyric Opera House
  • choreography Alexander Ekman
  • Music Mikael Karlsson

Far from a Shakespearean tale, Ekman’s 'Midsummer Night’s Dream' is a mind-bending trip to a surreal realm of unearthly delights. Set during the traditional Scandinavian summer solstice festival, dancers celebrate a day of revelry and romance under the maypole, which soon unravels into an otherworldly dream. Ekman’s picturesque fusion of classical and contemporary ballet blurs the line between the real and the imagined and makes us wonder, is it all a dream?

Schedule and Tickets

Midsummer, traditionally celebrated on June 24, has its roots in a pre-Christian solstice festival. In many countries, including Sweden, the summer solstice was celebrated with huge outdoor bonfires, but nowadays the focus of the celebrations is the maypole (or Midsummer pole) decorated with greenery and flowers. The tradition of dancing around a Midsummer pole is old, though of course the dances have changed over the centuries.
Today Swedish Midsummer festivities typically include ring dances and games, such as tug of war or bag jumping, for people of all ages to join in. One of the most popular dances is Små Grodorna, where the dancers jump around the pole while singing about small frogs. The celebrations also include eating lunch or dinner outdoors at long tables.
Midsummer was considered to be a time of magic, and everything in nature was thought to have a special power during that night. Gathering flowers and herbs was a way to harness nature's magic. Weaving crowns of wildflowers is still a Midsummer tradition, and many Swedes are still collecting seven different kinds of flowers and placing them under their pillow, hoping to dream of their future husband or wife.

Midsummer Night's Dream Trailer (2018)

Meet the Creative Team

Choreographer Alexander Ekman

Alexander Ekman is an international choreographer/director creating pieces for theatres, opera houses and museums. He also directs films and creates live performances/events in pop up locations around the world. Ekman has created and collaborated with 45 dance companies worldwide.

Composer Mikael Karlsson

“Mikael Karlsson embodies the composer of the future," wrote Dagens Nyheter (Sweden’s leading daily newspaper).



Presenting Sponsor and Set and Costume Build Sponsor

  • Dr. Lynda Sue Lane

Major Production Sponsor

  • Mary Jo and Doug Basler