Shepherd University’s Rude Mechanicals Medieval and Renaissance Players theater group has begun rehearsals for their upcoming performances of Shakespeare’s comedy Much Ado About Nothing.
Dr. Betty Ellzey, Associate Professor of English and Co-Coordinator of the woman’s studies program is directing the play, with assistant director Jeannie Moore. The play will be accompanied with music arrangements directed by Ben Denny and dance choreographed by Caitlin Shambaugh.
Much Ado About Nothing is said to be one of Shakespeare’s best comedies by many critics and scholars alike. The plot revolves around the attempted marriage of a nobleman named Claudio (played by Alen Tamplan) and Hero, the daughter of a governor (played by Ashley Hall) being disrupted by Don John, who is described as “the bastard prince” (played by Sam Montebell).
“it’s a really great play with something for almost anyone: romance, comedy, betrayal,” said actress Ashley Smith when questioned about why people should be interested in attending the Rude Mechanicals’ upcoming performances.
“I would say something about how much more popular the play is since Joss Whedon filmed a version of it, and the compelling the topics of: feminism, social obligation, revenge, and public perception versus actual truth.” said Anna Brammeier, who plays the character Beatrice for half of the performances. “As for my character, I love that she bucks the romantic social system she is born into, and says–often wittily–exactly what she thinks of the world and people around her. She is as close to being a feminist as any of Shakespeare’s characters can be,” she said.
While there are no set show times yet, evening showings of the play are scheduled for Friday, November seventh, Saturday, November eighth, Wednesday, November 12th, Thursday, November 13th, Friday, November 14th and Saturday, November 15th. A matinee performance is scheduled for Sunday, November ninth.