Thursday, 16 October 2014

Shakespeare in the park: Much Ado about Nothing

One of the perks about being a teacher is the school vacation times. Some teachers get offended when people joke that holidays are the reason for them becoming a teacher. They think that it belittles their dedication for education as most teachers are hard workers.  Anyway, I love it when it’s the school holidays because I get a break from teaching. I don’t have to think about planning lessons and waking up early. Most full time teachers don’t get much of a vacation and some return to work early as they have to prepare for the new term. I’m a relief (substitute) teacher so I don’t have to worry about school planning.
During the holidays, I went to see an outdoor production of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing. It was a performance from my old school, the University of Southern Queensland Artworx. I thought the play was very good. It was my first time seeing Much Ado About Nothing. Much Ado About Nothing is a comedy centering on courtship, mistaken identity and misunderstandings.  The story takes place in the 15th century in Messina, Italy and is about the courtship between the fair lady Hero and the young Lord Claudio. The friends and family of the two help and hinder them through the process and there is also a secondary love story between two supporting characters.
USQ Artworx Production of Much Ado About Nothing
Antonia, Leonata and Don Pedro (L-R)
I was a bit worried about whether I could follow the story but it was easy enough. I had a two second delay as I translated Shakespearean to what I thought they meant when I watched the play.   USQ set Much Ado About Nothing in modern times with contemporary clothing and 80s music. I thought the performance was sexy and I thought it was a little inappropriate as there were some young children in the audience.  Fortunately, I think most of the children didn't understand any of the play but all the gyrations and risqué dancing was a sight they probably shouldn't have seen.
I thought the performance was very good. The cast were all well rehearsed and made no slips in their speeches. I liked the way the cast expressed their words and their gestures which helped me to identify what was going on in the story so when I missed some of the context, I could see that it was a funny moment or sad moment etc.

Have you watched any Shakespearean plays? Do you have a favourite? Or have you studied or read Shakespeare?


  1. I haven't watched any Shakespearean plays, but I would love to! I have seen the movie of Romeo & Juliet before and I have seen so many adaptions of it. Love it although I do have a love/hate relationship with the written play. And at school I am currently studying the Merchant of Venice.

    1. I hope you enjoy The Merchant of Venice. I've never read or watched Romeo and Juliet. I ought to put it on my to do list as it is one of Shakespeare's most famous plays.


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