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Much Ado About Nothing

10 Jul 2019

Much Ado About Nothing Image

By Sarah Bartlett

Bell Shakespeare returns to Southbank this July with an evocative re-imagining of Shakespeare’s classic comedy Much Ado About Nothing.

Presented by Arts Centre Melbourne, Much Ado About Nothing delivers a razor-sharp battle of wits between the bickering Beatrice and Benedick, who prefer to exchange sassy insults betraying their true love for each other.

Claudio and Hero are madly in love but Claudio is consumed by his own jealousy and humiliates Hero.

Much Ado About Nothing will explore the themes of searching for identity as well as the knowledge of one’s self within a male-dominated world.

The contemporary production is directed by Bell Shakespeare’s associate director James Evans (Julius Caesar) and starring Zindzi Okenyo (Antony and Cleopatra, MTC’s An Ideal Husband) as Beatrice and Duncan Ragg as Benedick.

This cast is supported by renowned comedian Mandy Bishop, Home and Away-alumni Will McDonald, Vivienne Awosoga, Danny Ball, Marissa Bennet, Suzanne Pereira, Paul Reichstein and David Whitney.

Director James Evans said he was thrilled to direct the 27-venue national tour once again after directing last year’s national tour of Julius Caesar.

“This is the original ‘from hate to love’ romantic comedy that we’ve seen repeated in films and plays since Shakespeare’s time. But beneath its sparkling wit and hilarious characters, there is a dark conflict that drives this play to the edge of tragedy,” Mr Evans said.

“The story flips from uproarious comedy to utter heartbreak in an instant, and then back again. That is the genius of Shakespeare, and why this play is one of my favourites.”

Much Ado About Nothing will run at Arts Centre Melbourne from July 17 -27. Artscentremelbourne.com.au

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