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Much Ado About Nothing hits the Globe Theatre

Take a bow, little guy! / Haley Klassen

Take a bow, little guy! / Haley Klassen

From Oct. 1-19, the Globe Theatre began their season with a production of Much Ado About Nothing. Directed by Marti Maraden, the play was well received and for a good reason. The actors did a fine job of speaking Shakespeare’s dialogue without sounding unnatural or too haughty. Watching the play, it was easy to become immersed in the language and the story: a feat that (as a non-actor, I would imagine) is difficult to achieve.

Costume designer Nick Blais styled the set minimally, as is common for Globe productions. The props that were on stage weren’t necessarily there the whole show and were moved about by the actors. I love this feature of the Globe. Seeing actors assemble and disassemble the set includes you in the creation of the play, making it feel more intimate. You become swept up in the magic of the performance.

This production was an exciting debut for ten of the sixteen actors in the show, many of whom graduated from the 2014 Globe Theatre Conservatory. I can imagine Shakespeare’s characters being some tough shoes to fill because his plays are likely some of the most performed ever, but this group did a fantastic job. Diane D’Aquila played Leonato and not only did she impressively pull off a man’s role, but she also did it in a wheelchair due to a leg injury! If that’s not impressive, I don’t know what is. Devin Wesnoski played Balthasar and had such a beautiful voice that I was not only surprised, but also a bit jealous.

Joey Tremblay played Dogberry hilariously; his facial expressions were absolutely perfect and had the whole theatre laughing. However, a couple of his scenes had me a bit confused. I’ve read Much Ado About Nothing but apparently did not pay enough attention because the scene in which Dogberry gathers a citizen watch had me flabbergasted. What exactly was going on, I wasn’t too sure. It was funny, though, and seeing peasants attempt to win the favour of a ridiculous guard like Dogberry is always entertaining.

Even more confusing, though, were a couple costume choices. First of all, a scene between Claudio, Benedick, and Don Pedro had the men shirtless with towels around their waists. Secondly, Hero, Margaret, and Ursula, while prepping Hero for her wedding, were dressed in very short, see-through housecoats. I don’t think I am that conservative, but these costume choices definitely surprised me, and I am still not sure of their purpose. However, this is the theatre: a place for experimentation.

The production, though some costumes were quite different than what I was expecting, was great. The point of theatre is to give you a little something unexpected; otherwise it would be no fun, right? So overall, the production was a hit.

If you missed this show, or are not a fan of Shakespeare, do not fret! The Globe has a fantastic and diverse season lined up, and you can catch their next production You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown next month, from Nov. 15-Dec. 28. Yes, this upcoming play is about the Peanuts! See you there!

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