It's the closest thing in Boston to a bacchanal: Every Saturday night, the A.R.T. Oberon transforms into a 70s-era disco party for The Donkey Show, an interactive, immersive retelling of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream.
The brainchild of famed director Diane Paulus, the show always promises a wild night out, replete with jump-up-and-dance music, sexy costumes, and plenty of glitters. You can expect to see dancers on roller skates, drag queens, and feather boas, too, all against the backdrop of crowd-pleasing disco hits.
The show runs 90 minutes, after which the theater opens up for a full-on dance party. Because the cast mingles with the audience, costumes are strongly encouraged for all attendees: This is the opportunity to break out your bell-bottom jeans, paisley blouses, wigs, and sparkly jewelry. The more ostentatious, the better!
Additionally, The Donkey Show hosts Queen Night once a month, where a drag queen takes over the disco booth and also performs live on stage. If you're only going to make one Donkey Show performance during your visit, this is the one to plan for -- you'll get the wildest night with the most raucous crowd.
Naturally, you'll often find bachelorette parties, birthday celebrations, and other revelers here. But it's also an opportunity for an unusual date night if you're feeling adventurous!
Should you take out-of-towners? Depends on their personalities! While it's certainly theatrical, it's by no means a standard night out at the theater. Think of it as a themed night out at a '70s dance club, with a lengthier performance than usual at the beginning. It's a little naughty, a little risque. It's great for people who love to dance. It's visceral and unusual -- and always memorable!
Shows are typically at 10:30 p.m. on Saturday nights (although some months, such as June with Pride Week, feature a few earlier shows as well). Tickets cost $25 or $35 per person for dance floor standing room only, and $45 per person for either stage or mezzanine tables.
To buy tickets or get more information, visit the A.R.T. website or call 617-547-8300.
Edited by Sarah Pascarella