Much Ado Scores Highly
Much ado about nothing was most certainly a big to do about quite a lot, even though done with very little, and tucked away in a place quite difficult to find. Much ado is one of Shakespeare’s pure comedies, with only a tiny bit of tragedy mixed in, so as to create some tension between the lovers. This performance was put on by the Portland Actors Ensemble who also staged “The Tempest” earlier in the year. I am quite amazed at the depth of talent that they have. Almost no cast member appeared in both productions and yet there was no lack of great performances in either. Let’s just say – I thoroughly enjoyed myself.
So let’s start with Leonato, played by Tim Park and Antonio played by Patrick Cox. These two old gentlemen reminded me of scenes from Last of the Summer Wine – an English TV series. Still with most of their wits, but maybe just a little bit lacking – particularly for Antonio, who also had some wonderfully done disfigurements, they both amused and acted as one of the study backbones of the production.
Then there were the two lover pairs. First we have the main lovers Hero, played by Sara Fay Goldman and Claudio, played by Arthur Delaney. They both had wonderful facial expressions throughout and delivered commanding performances.
Then there are the lovers that we sometimes see in ourselves. Quarreling, arguing, unable to admit that they love each other and yet they so do, Beatrice played by Racheal Joy Erickson and Benedick, played by Johnny Adkins, kept up their playful fighting until we wondered what they would do or say to each other next.
And then there was Dogberry – the rather senseless constable that was played with campy abandon by once again – Sara Fay Goldman. You couldn’t help but laugh and her campiness seemed most natural. A true delight!
So, as with all of their production, admission is free but a donation is requested to help them continue to put on such productions. They do accept normal, regular type of donation – such as money, but in addition have entered the modern age taking electronic donations as well!
If you are interested in seeing this production, you still have a chance. They will be in Gabriel Park on the 20th and 21st August, Marylhurst University on the 27th, Concordia University on the 28th and Reed College on September 3rd through 5th. More information on their website at http://portlandactors.org/2001bMuchAdo.htm
Brought to you by Brian Bailey
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Products you may be interested in:
Much Ado About Nothing [Blu-ray]
Much Ado About Nothing / New York Shakespeare Festival (Broadway Theatre Archive)
One thought on “Much Ado Scores Highly”
Thank the author so much for this lovely article. Great job!