Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing comes to Hertford stage

PUBLISHED: 14:30 16 November 2014 | UPDATED: 14:30 16 November 2014

Leonato (Roger Slater) entices Beatrice (Julie Markey) in Hertford Dramatic & Operatic Society's production of Much Ado About Nothing

Leonato (Roger Slater) entices Beatrice (Julie Markey) in Hertford Dramatic & Operatic Society's production of Much Ado About Nothing

Archant

Much Ado About Nothing, one of Shakespeare’s best-loved comedies, comes to the Hertford stage this week.

Director Sarah Cornell with 'co-director' PoppyDirector Sarah Cornell with 'co-director' Poppy

The Hertford Dramatic & Operatic Society’s latest production can be seen at the Hertford Theatre from Wednesday, November 19 to Saturday, November 22.

Much Ado About Nothing is considered to be one of the Bard’s best-loved comedies, dealing in romance, rumours and trickery, and is an opportunity to reacquaint yourself with or dip your toe into Shakespeare.

Though dotted with a few darker moments, it is a joyful comedy that ends with multiple marriages – and no deaths.

HD&OS hopes that its production will be of particular interest to students of Shakespeare, even if it is not their area of study.

Beatrice (Julie Markey) in heated conversation with Benedick (Jim Markey) in Hertford Dramatic & Operatic Society's Much Ado About NothingBeatrice (Julie Markey) in heated conversation with Benedick (Jim Markey) in Hertford Dramatic & Operatic Society's Much Ado About Nothing

An attractive schools’ group rate is offered for the Wednesday to Friday performances for under-18s at just £10, with one teacher getting a free ticket for every group of 10 students.

Following her box office success with Season’s Greetings last November, experienced director Sarah Cornell said: “As head of drama at Simon Balle School in Hertford, I know how important it is for anyone who studies Shakespeare to experience the language live, rather than reading it cold on the page.

“This comedy is one of Shakespeare’s most accessible plays.”

With the start of World War One being commemorated this year, Sarah has chosen to set the play post war, when soldiers were returning to find more feisty and independent women than those they left behind, emphasising how The Great War changed lives forever.

Ursula (Helen Budd) enjoying the lively company of Antonio (Martyn Broyd) in Hertford Dramatic & Operatic Society's production of Much Ado About NothingUrsula (Helen Budd) enjoying the lively company of Antonio (Martyn Broyd) in Hertford Dramatic & Operatic Society's production of Much Ado About Nothing

An enchanting addition to the crew is Sarah’s little dog Poppy, whom she regularly brings to rehearsals.

Although a complete change of pace and culture, it is hoped that audiences will turn out in similar numbers to see Much Ado About Nothing as they did for the society’s recent production of Our House.

HD&OS president Graham Lay said: “There is nothing to compare with live theatre and we are so lucky to have a wonderful society giving such a variety of productions and to be able to do so in the county town’s own professional theatre.”

Evening performances start at 7.45pm, and there is a Saturday matinee at 3pm.

Tickets cost £13.50 full price, concessions (18 and under and over 60s) Wednesday, Friday and Saturday matinee £10.

* Tickets are available from the Hertford Theatre box office on 01992 531500 and online at www.hertfordtheatre.com/box-office


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