Much Ado About Nothing  by William Shakespeare 
Directed by Susanna Wilson

Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, in a modern-day concept, directed & adapted by Susanna Wilson. Performances in Peachtree Corners, Norcross, and Johns Creek in May of 2024, for three weekends outdoors! Bring your own blankets and lawn chairs.

About:  Much Ado is one of Shakespeare’s most light-hearted comedies, making it a perfect choice for family-friendly programming.  Love at first sight, jealousy and confusion, an illegitimate sibling, mixed-up lovers, three weddings and a funeral – Much Ado About Nothing is an amusing look at timeless truths about love, betrayal, and acceptance.  Through contrasting different types of relationships, Shakespeare pokes fun not only at marriage, but also at love itself. All performances will be outside, for a “Shakespeare in the Park” experience.

Show details: The primary plot of Much Ado About Nothing turns on the courtship and scandal involving young Hero and her suitor (Claudia, in this version) and the witty war of words between Benedick and Hero’s cousin Beatrice. The play takes place entirely in Messina, on the island of Sicily. The time period has been updated to today. Instead of soldiers returning from war, Don Pedro and his “soldiers” are the director and crew of a movie, returning to producer Leonata’s villa from a film festival where they have just won top honors. The result is a “house party” that lasts for more than a week! Benedick, the screenwriter, verbally duels with Beatrice, Leonata’s niece and a writer in her own right. Claudia, the Cinematographer/Director of Photography (DP), is smitten by Leonata’s daughter, Hero. After Director Don Pedro woos Hero (in mask) for Claudia, the young lovers plan to marry in a week. To fill in the time until the wedding, Don Pedro and the others set about tricking Benedick and Beatrice into falling in love with each other. Meanwhile, Don Pedro’s disgruntled half-sibling (and the original director of the movie), Don Joan, plots to ruin Hero and halt her wedding. Claudia believes Don Joan’s deception, is convinced Hero has another lover, and, at the wedding, brutally rejects her. With Hero in hiding and falsely reported dead, Beatrice persuades Benedick to fight Claudia. Tragedy is averted when the bumbling City Watch (led by Dogberry and sidekick Verges), having discovered Don Joan’s treachery, arrives and clears Hero’s name. With Claudia forgiven, both couples are ready to get married, and all ends well.

May 11-26, Saturdays and Sundays ONLY. Saturdays at 2PM & 5PM; Sundays at 3PM. Currently seeking sponsors to keep the show affordable for audiences, with a “Pass the Hat” donation after each performance.

Performing at Simpsonwood Park Meadow, Peachtree Corners, on May 11-12;  in the field behind Christ Church Episcopal, Norcross, on May 18-19; closing at Autrey Mill Nature Preserve on May 25-26.

Content Advisory: sexual innuendo

Much Ado About Nothing

May 11 - May 12, 2024

Peachtree Corners, at Simpsonwood Park (May 11-12)

Much Ado About Nothing

May 18 - May 19, 2024

Norcross, at Christ Church Episcopal (May 18-19)

Much Ado About Nothing

May 25 - May 26, 2024

Johns Creek, at Autrey Mill Nature Preserve (May 25-26)