At the Globe: “Much Ado About Nothing”

As a celebration for finishing our ‘Authors’ exams, Sarah and I headed down to Shakespeare’s Globe for a Thursday afternoon performance of the Bard’s comedy, Much Ado About Nothing.

inside The Globe

inside The Globe

The performance was excellent. I hadn’t seen a Shakespeare play live since attending the Oregon Shakespeare Festival with my grandma back in 2008, and this lived up to all expectations. I appreciated seeing Shakespeare performed in a simple and straightforward manner — as it should be. There were minimal props, simple costumes, and a cast of eight with almost everyone doubling parts. Now to the play:

First of all, Much Ado About Nothing is hilarious. The older I get the better I understand the language and get the jokes; Shakespeare really was a genius. This performance of Much Ado was very well-acted. Stand-outs for me were Emma Pallant as Beatrice and Simon Bubb as Benedick — they made a great pair, and Pallant and Bubb’s banter was brilliant to watch, as Beatrice and Benedick carry the bulk of the wit in the play. I — along with the audience — also took particular pleasure in Chris Starkle’s performance of Dogberry, for which he exchanged his serious Don John face for an aviator cap and Scottish accent. I was also surprisingly touched by the scene of Hero’s return — and Claudio’s surprise at it — near the end.

The production pleasingly and effectively incorporates a lot of music, too: the entire cast takes part, on accordion, tambourine, guitar…and they sing! (the well-known Shakespeare song, “Sigh no more, ladies.”) The early banquet/”revels” scene was done exceptionally well, with the music swelling and subsiding as sets of characters break away to converse.

Overall it was a top-notch performance. If you have a chance to see a Shakespeare play at the Globe, I highly recommend that you do it!

(Play aside, it was thrilling to sit inside a replica of Shakespeare’s Globe, the theatre most associated with his works. As it rained on and off throughout the performance, Sarah and I were very glad to have splurged on proper seats.)

Have you seen a performance at the Globe? What did you think?


6 thoughts on “At the Globe: “Much Ado About Nothing”

  1. Shantaya

    I was just at the Globe last week for a tour. This makes me wish I could’ve stayed for a performance. Sounds like a great experience.

    1. taplatt Post author

      That’s great, Shantaya! I do recommend catching a performance, if you can. I haven’t done the tour yet — would you recommend it?

      1. Shantaya

        Sorry for the late reply , I didn’t see this at all. Honestly, I didn’t really enjoy my tour. I went on a special press day so we weren’t allowed to take pictures or actually go near the stage. We did get to sit in the bleachers and see the stage but had to be silent the whole time as they were doing interviews below. I believe it ended early also.

        If you do go , make sure you go on a regular day and get to experience the whole thing. It’ll make it worth the 12 pounds 🙂 Hope I helped

      2. taplatt Post author

        That’s too bad about your tour, Shantaya. Thanks for the advice to go on a regular day.

  2. Alexandra

    INCREDIBLY JEALOUS! Much Ado About Nothing is my favorite Shakespeare play, and the fact that you saw it in the Globe…I’m green with envy right now! 🙂


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