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“Much Ado About Nothing” runs April 8-13

Posted 03/27/14

Much Ado About Nothing, directed by Kelly MorganA new twist on a classic comedy will be on display when the Fitchburg State University Communications Media and Industrial Technology departments present William Shakespeare’s timeless “Much Ado about Nothing” this April.

The play, directed by Fitchburg State faculty member Kelly Morgan, will be presented Tuesday, April 8 and Wednesday April 9 at 6 p.m.; Thursday, April 10 through Saturday, April 12 at 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday, April 13, at 2 p.m., at the Wallace Theater for the Performing Arts at the McKay Complex, 67 Rindge Road. Admission is free, but donations will be accepted at the door.

“Much Ado About Nothing,” one of Shakespeare's most celebrated plays, highlights both comedy and more serious topics such as honor and shame.

Morgan’s adaptation shifts the action to the U.S. just after the Civil War. The story revolves around the lives of two sets of lovers: Benedick and Beatrice, and Claudio and Hero. Throughout the play, the couples emphasize their different views on romance in a time of war, where both jealousy and justice are common themes.

Morgan says that his adaptation will feature a few “twists that are not in the original work.” The show will feature replicas of uniforms from the Civil War, live music, and Morgan’s magic twist of the plot.

“Kelly has a very realistic aesthetic he is trying to achieve, so that means I am basically bringing an 1865 Post-Civil War farm to the Wallace Theater,” said Nick Robinette of Dorchester, the show’s production designer. “It’s been a lot of fun and I'm looking forward to the finished product.”

John Ardini of Billerica, playing Major Benedick, has been acting for about a year. “I always look forward to working with Kelly, so I was excited to work on this show,” Ardini said. “I was also a little nervous because this is my first Shakespeare production.”

Ardini plans to continue acting in the future, and make his way out to California after he graduates to pursue acting in film.

On the other hand, Noah Dawson of Royalston has been acting since middle school, and has been part of a series of plays. Dawson will play Claudio and said he couldn't be any more excited about it.

“I'm a theater major and this arguably could be my favorite Shakespeare play,” Dawson said. “I’m always excited for a production, but I’m especially excited about this one.”

Dawson, who dreams to work in a theater company, will be going off on an internship after the show is over.

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