Performance Dates
Saturday May 3rd 8pm
Sunday May 4th 3pm
Saturday May 10th 8pm
Sunday May 11th 3pm
Saturday May 17th 8pm
Sunday May 18th 3pm
Saturday May 24th 8pm
Sunday May 25th 3pm
May 3-25, 2014
William Shakespeare’s

Much Ado About Nothing

Directed by L. Peter Callender

Closing African-American Shakespeare Company’s 19th season is William Shakespeare’s glorious comedy of love delayed, MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING. Celebrating the joy of love and the power of redemption, MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING chronicles the clever banter and sincere affection of two pairs of lovers, Benedick and Beatrice; and Claudio and Hero. Benedick and Beatrice are engaged in a very “merry war” in which they both proclaim their disdain of love. In contrast, Claudio and Hero are a sweet young couple who are practically rendered speechless by their love for one another. While Benedick and Beatrice are tricked into confessing their love, Claudio is tricked into rejecting Hero at the altar. Despite the villainy and betrayal, all ends well, proving that love does indeed conquer all. African-American Shakespeare Company Artistic Director L. Peter Callender directs a modern take on this Bard classic.

Director’s Notes

Much Ado About Nothing combines great humor with more serious issues of honor and shame and is considered one of Shakespeare’s sharpest comedies. The story focuses on two pairs of lovers, the more mature and combative Beatrice and Benedick, and the younger, innocent Claudio and Hero, each couple having a different take on romance. Soldiers returning from war, false accusations, faked death, rampant eavesdropping (or ‘noting’–which is how the word ‘nothing’ was pronounced in Shakespeare’s London), and two weddings provide for rich plot of twists and turns. We will explore the relationship of courtship and romance and the realities of suppressed anger, frustrated sexuality and complicated longing that all the characters wrestle with throughout the play. The exuberant celebration of youth and love and the devastating consequences of their shame and fear; romance, anxiety, sexuality and fiery rage, set in post WWII, the music of the incomparable and majestic Ella Fitzgerald, and the style of the many wit-warring romantic comedies of the era–look for a fun, emotional, heart gripping ride!

Director L. Peter Callender


Dwight Dean Mahabir
Don Pedro
Kelvyn Mitchell
Leontyne Mbele-Mbong
Ryan Vincent Anderson*
Hero and Sexton
Danielle Doyle
Margaret/George Seacol
Tavia Percia
Monica Cappuccini
Aejay Mitchell
Twon Marcel
ShawnJ West
Don John
Jim Gessner
Fe’Lisha Goodlow

Production Team

L. Peter Callender
Production Manager
Gregg Hood
Stage Manager
Cheryle Honerlah
Technical Director and Lighting Designer
Kevin Myrick
Set Designer/Carpenter
Bert van Aalsburg
Costume Designer
Maureen “Mo” Stone
Assistant Director
Donna Simone Johnson
Tom Segal

* The Actor appears through the courtesy of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.