The first scene of 'A Midsummer Night's Dream,' is one of the three most important scenes in the play as it establishes what the play will be about. The scene tells us a lot about the story, and the information is vital for the audience to understand the story shown in the play. This information includes Theseus and Hippolyta's love, the Athenian law, Demetrius and Lysander and what Egeus thinks of them, Hermia and Lysander's love, and Helena's plan.
The audience are told about Theseus and Hippolyta at the start of the scene. Their love is shown when Theseus shows how eager he is for their upcoming wedding in four long days. Hippolyta, poses as a more practical character and replies, "Four days will quickly steep themselves in night; Four nights will quickly dream away the time." Here it is possible for the audience to think that she does not love Theseus, but she follows this with a pretty description of the joyous festivities to come.
We also learn a bit about Theseus's personality in this first scene, as later on when he is telling Hermia what she must do to solve her problem, he does not get angry at her talking back to him and tries to give her the best opportunity to decide on what she will do. These aspects tell us about Theseus and Hippolyta and their wedding, which give the reason for the rude mechanical's need to make a play.
A ruling in the Athenian law, which states a father's control over his daughter, is also shown in the first scene. Egeus poses his problem to Theseus and Theseus clearly states that Hermia must choose "either to die the death or to abdure for ever the society of men," if she did not...