NATIONAL THEATRE LIVE @ Rialto Theatre - Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare
Much Ado About Nothing is, broadly speaking, about worlds colliding: across the social hierarchy, the sexes, generations, and even cultures. It’s also about direction and misdirection, hearing and mishearing, romance and resentment, the difference between literary wooing and real-life relationships, and there’s some comedy in it too for good measure.
Katherine Parkinson (The IT Crowd) and John Heffernan (Dracula) lead the cast in William Shakespeare’s romcom of sun, sea and mistaken identity.
The play sits in the early middle portion of Shakespeare’s career, building on the structure of early comedies, developing the style and language into plots with more sophistication, and a nod towards the subversion encountered in later comedies like Measure for Measure and Cymbeline. It retains the spirit of earlier comedies, toying with audience expectations about romance, with Beatrice and Benedick defiantly wooing one another in witty prose, and Claudio failing to woo Hero by any stretch of the imagination. By the same token, themes that crop up in later plays in more disturbing situations are percolating in this middle comedy: Claudio’s rejection of Hero at the altar, masterminded by Don John, might bring to mind Othello’s sexual jealousy of Desdemona, and Posthumous’ eagerness to believe in Imogen’s infidelity in Cymbeline. In each case, a Don John-like figure skulks in the wings to destroy a woman’s reputation and, by extension, a man’s honour. In early modern theatrical terms, Much Ado is structurally a comedy: it moves from confusion to resolution by way of matrimony; but is it a comedy as we understand the genre today? The answer, to quote Benedick, is enigmatical.
‘Simon Godwin masterfully directs a slick production’ (Guardian)
‘A blissful revival’ (Telegraph)
‘Sweet, sparky, sexy, somber’ (Financial Times)
‘The emotional heft of an earthquake’ (Telegraph)
‘Bruised lovers’ charm amid simmering Italian chic’ (Times)
‘Katherine Parkinson and John Heffernan are a blast in this luxuriously eccentric take on Shakespeare’s romcom’ (Time Out)
‘A tremendous production of Shakespeare’s comedy’ (Broadway World)
‘Extremely easy on the eye and a consummate midsummer comedy’ (Guardian)
‘The gift that keeps on giving’ (Observer)
★★★★★ Broadway World
★★★★ London Theatre
Major Sponsors: ΟΠΑΠ ΚΥΠΡΟΥ (OPAP CYPRUS), Island Oil, Medochemie, Atlas Pantou Co Ltd.
Media Sponsors: Cyprus Mail, Rik, Kanali 6.
Rialto Theatre, Andrea Drousioti, Str.Heroes Square 3040 Lemesos
Saturday 18/02/2023 at 19:00
Price: €12/8 E-ticket: www.rialto.com.cy
Box Office: 77777745 (Monday - Friday 10:00-15:00)