Spectator previews ‘Much Ado About Nothing’

Category:  The Arts
Wednesday, November 8th, 2017 at 4:39 PM

Director J.D. Mizikowski and the students of Edinboro University are bringing to life Shakespeare’s classic comedy, “Much Ado About Nothing.” 

Edinboro has not tackled a Shakespearean show since 2015; the last was “The Scottish Play” (otherwise known as “Macbeth” for those unfamiliar with the infamous theatre superstition.) “Much Ado About Nothing” is a fun but feasible comedy for both the student actors and viewers alike; the silly situations are still relevant today, which is something that makes Shakespeare's work so iconic. 

The twist is that it will be in a slightly more modern setting, sporting a prep-school feel. “Much Ado” is much about coming home from a conflict, and in this case, “a group of students coming back from a game and what happens afterwards,” according to Mizikowski. 

Here, The Spectator talks with some of the cast and catches a glimpse of the hard work that goes into performing a show by one of the most recognized playwrights of all time.

Q: How did you connect with your character and prepare for your role?

Gail Delk, sophomore, stated that Beatrice is her dream role and described the character as an “OG feminist.” Delk relates to the independence of Beatrice, “who is very much her own woman although no one realizes it.” 

“I’m a literature major, so I’ve always been familiar with the play,” stated Torie Witherow, playing the malapropism toting Headmaster Constable Dogberry. “I’m lucky that I have a Verges that knows the show well and knows how to get into character. We bounce well off of each other,” Witherow said, nodding to Sarah Schroeder, who plays Deputy Good-Neighbor Constable Verges.

“I’m her (Dogberry’s) shadow. This is my first show and Verges is a really good intro character,” explained Schroeder.  

Q: What is your favorite scene?

Freshman Kyle Ferree plays the mischievous and rather conspicuous Don Jon and commented that “any scene with scheming” is his favorite. “Especially the party scene where everyone is dancing. I have an obvious moment with Claudio of my first proper scheming.” 

Q: What is your most challenging scene?

Daniel Wolstrom chuckled. “Good question. Probably ‘The Dance Scene.’ It’s very emotional, and it’s not an emotion I’m used to, that impotent rage. I tried a few different ways but found one and just went with it.” Wolstrom plays Claudio, prone to brooding and suspicion and in love with Hero. 

Q: Why should people come see “Much Ado About Nothing”?  

“These stories are not dated, they are not prone to one person’s experience. Anyone can relate to a number of characters in this show,” explained Eric Reiche, playing the role of Don Pedro. “There’s not a lot of shows with happy endings either, [and] it feels good to do a comedy.” 

Erika Krasneski, a junior playing Borachio reminds us of the importance of Shakespeare and the longevity of his work. “Lots of our stories in entertainment are still based on Shakespeare; he’s inside all of us. Seeing his stories as a show rather than just reading them gives you a better understanding of what is going on and why Shakespeare has had this influence on us.” 

“Much Ado About Nothing” will be shown in Diebold Center for the Performing Arts on Nov. 9-11 and Nov. 16-18 at 7:30 p.m. There will be two matinée shows, one on Nov. 12 and the other on Nov. 19, at 2:30 p.m. General admission is $10; $5 for EU faculty,  staff, non-EU students and senior citizens; and $3 for EU students.

Livia Homerski can be reached at ae.spectator@gmail.com.

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