Much Ado About Nothing (review)

Much Ado About Nothing (review)
Much Ado About Nothing (review)
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THE PLAY: A jealous prince conspires to ruin the happy marriage of Hero and Claudio, while Beatrice and Benedick swear never to fall in love. Included are Shakespeare’s themes of deception, mistaken identity and gender tension.

 

THE PRODUCTION: Donna Marie Miller & David White are the show’s strongest asset. She delivers a confident performance as Beatrice, while White (the love befuddled Benedick) provides the show’s best comic moments. As the buffoon Dogberry, Josha Daniels lacks the comic personality to deliver on the potential of his amusing curtain speech. Most of the remaining cast is adequate. Any promise of fun that’s set up in Act 1 slowly deteriorates after intermission, starting with the leaden constable scene (that’s intended to be a comic highlight). Just when the pacing should ramp up, it falters, which must be attributed to director Foster Solomon, who also doesn’t demand more interesting characters and allows minor actors to steal focus. The costumes are period appropriate.

 

THE POINT: This is an adequate production, but generally fails to capture the wit or personality of Shakespeare’s play.

 

3 out of 5 stars (3 / 5)

 

The Richmond Shakespeare Festival (a Quill Theatre production) at Agecroft thru 6/28

 

Much Ado-1601

Photos by Aaron Sutton

 

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