I think this was from my first year, too--I took Eileen's Shakespeare class for 2.5 credits.
I'm really glad, first off, that we get to actually perform this and run lines as opposed to just reading/studying + discussing it. Although the discussion certainly clears up a lot of things in terms of who said what, what it means and some of the historical details I don't always pick up on...there is something drastically different between reading a line to understand it and reading a line to act it out and put in your own interpretation.
Since Shakespeare is, indeed, dead*...we don't know exactly how he expected the characters to be and even if we did, the actors might have played it differently than he had written it.
*and they didn't have Camcorders back then
In any case, I think it's just so interesting to analyze the depth of a character by hearing and seeing different interpretations of it.
Midsummer Night's Dream is funny with its whole ethereal/dream-like/"it's all an illusion" bent. There are some very serious issues brought up but the contrast between those issues and the light-hearted tone of the faeries.
From watching scene 1.2 performed I learned a lot abt... there was a LOT of humor I missed. Quince's role took on new life because suddenly words like "a lover, who killed himself most gallant for love" took on new meaning.
Bottom's humor was also even MORE evident in his over-eagerness to play every part.
Natalie as Flute was very funny as well but I think that's because of the casting. :)
Snug and Quince's interaction brought on new meaning with the part "You may do it extempore b/c it is NOTHING BUT ROARING."
There wasn't a whole ton of humor that I could have picked on in Oberon and Titania's part. What I learned from it was just how dramatic the two really are, and not faerie-like, and powerful. Oberon's jealousy (and how he was not used to getting what he wanted) was apparent.
The part with Helena and Hermia I didn't learn too much from because I already analyzed it for English-Speaking-Union. What I did pick up on was...
(okay, I'm getting bored typing this so it must be more boring reading it so I will stop now)