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July 27, 2018

Summer Is a Dream for Shakespearean Actor Michael Toperzer ’12

Michael Toperzer ’12 has experienced many a midsummer night this summer—he has played the roles of both Theseus, king of Athens, and Oberon, the fairy king, in the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company (CSC) production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Performed outdoors in Patapsco Female Institute Historic Park in Ellicott City, Maryland, the play ran from June 22, 2018, through July 29, 2018.

His performance has received favorable reviews from publications including DC Theatre Scene and DC Metro Theater Arts, which noted that he “brought a royal haughtiness to his roles as the Duke of Athens, Theseus, and Oberon.”

Playing the dual regal roles of Theseus and Oberon was a change from Toperzer’s portrayal this past spring of the White Rabbit in CSC’s Alice in Wonderland. But this alum is a versatile performer. In addition to appearing in Shakespearean roles in New York and Virginia and performing with Occupy Verona, a group that brings flash mob-style theater to the streets of New York City, his Backstage profile lists singing, whistling, stage combat, guitar, drums, didgeridoo, and several accents and dialects among his skills.

Nicholas Petron, M.A. ’70, professor and department chair of the Department of Theatre, remembered directing Toperzer in The Crucible when he was a student here. “He was always focused, serious but never somber, and an excellent performer who was great to work with,” Petron said. “He’s a great stage actor who will be able to cross over to screen roles as his career moves on.”

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