Review: Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing at The Globe Theatre 2 Sept – 23 Oct 2022

Visiting The Globe is always a magical experience no matter what you watch. But Much Ado About Nothing has surpassed all my expectations. I loved seeing a packed theatre filled with joyous energy while the actors where recreating an old comedy set in a more contemporary setting. 

The story 
Following years of war, in April 1945, somewhere in Northern Italy, Leonata and her daughters reopen their palazzo that has a wall of lush green ivy that clings to the exterior wall for a celebration to welcome the partisan soldiers back from recent victories.
Young lovers Hero and Claudio and proud singletons Beatrice and Benedick have their limits tested like never before in a wild mix of games, pranks and mischievous plots.
The verdict
I have taken two 16 year old reporters with me to review the show. Needless to say that I struggled to keep them focused on the play. It is disappointing to see how the school system has never managed to engage students with Shakespeare. On the other hand, as a passionate reader of the Bard, I felt, that of all Shakespeare’s comedies, Much Ado About Nothing is one of the most hilarious ones and its performance was filled with playful gags, intrigues, romance and lots of funny misunderstandings. 
Director Lucy Bailey (Titus Andronicus) transports Much Ado About Nothing from the original Sicilian setting to northern Italy and reimagines it taking place in 1945, days before the country was due to be freed from Mussolini’s fascist dictatorship. Bailey’s play version has a contemporary feel and entertains us from the first minute to the last with its gossipy chats, nationalistic chants such as Bella Ciao and fisarmonica’s songs sung in Sicilian and graciously played live by four talented female musicians. 
London Mums’ rating: 9/10 

I was so excited about this comedy that I even bought a Shakespeare’s Manga of Much Ado About Nothing at the lovely shop inside the Globe. This manga recreation of Shakespeare’s tricksiest comedy plays out its serial deceptions and counterfeits against the operatic backdrop of a later Italian landscape. But don’t believe everything you hear…

Tickets available from here.

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