Much Ado About Nothing, a comedy by William Shakespeare, took the Marian Stageat the beginning of April. The cast and crew worked very hard to bring the play to life in a more modern light.
The director of the play, Mr. Michael McCandless, changed the play to take place in the fifties, and the original 16th century play was given new life among rock and roll and poodle skirts. “I was already looking for a play set in the fifties, in honor of Marian being founded in the fifties, and couldn’t find anything I really liked. I’d already done this play set in the fifties at Creighton and decided it’d be perfect.” McCandless said.
McCandless has been involved in theatre since he was in high school, and had his first
ever audition at Marian. He is now a theatre professor at Creighton and still acts in shows when he can. Much Ado About Nothing was the fourth show he directed at Marian.
The cast of Much Ado About Nothing, composed of 30 Marian and Prep students,
brought William Shakespeare’s lovable characters to life. The play centers on two couples, Hero and Claudio, and Beatrice and Benedick. In the duration of the play, they fall in love, leading to a classic “happily ever after” ending.
Freshman Audrey Ana Otwell plays Hero, and Senior Claire Davis plays Beatrice, with
Prep students Michael Brown (Claudio) and Ian Salzman (Benedick) as their counterparts. “My favorite part about playing Benedick has been the character development. He has some funny moments, some intense moments. Mixing the two has been a challenge, but a fun challenge.” Salzman said.
The show was open April 8 through April 10. Throughout the four long months of practice, the cast always did its best to continue having fun, despite the mounting stress as opening night grew closer. “The cast exceeded my expectations a long time ago, they just need to keep doing what they all do well and enjoy the experience.” McCandless praised the cast.
“My favorite part has been getting to know the cast and crew, and all the fun we have while still putting on a serious production.” Otwell said. The cast developed an arsenal of inside jokes to always keep laughing.
Much Ado About Nothing may have been Shakespeare’s original comedy, but the cast members made it their own with their memorable humor and personality. “Though it’s Shakespeare, the acting talent of the cast has brought me close to tears and made me crack up at least once every practice.” said Salzman of his fellow cast members.
“It’s a great introduction to Shakespeare and it’s very energetic, so you’ll leave the show energized as well.” McCandless said.
The Saturday night show, on April 9, was dedicated to the memory of Mrs. Karen Brown, the former Marian receptionist who passed of cancer that morning. The cast pulled together in the time of grief and did the show for her. “Mrs. Brown would love this show. She would be so proud of each and every single one of us.” Senior Sofia Hingorani made a speech to the cast and crew minutes before the curtain opened. Mrs. Brown’s passing affected the students greatly, and the show that followed was very emotional.
The cast and crew members put alot into the show, and had as much fun with it as they could. “Have half as much fun as the cast does, and you’ll have a great day.” Said Otwell
The cast dedicated its Saturday, April 8 performance of “Much Ado About Nothing” to the memory of former Marian receptionist, Mrs. Karen Brown. Brown lost her battle to cancer earlier that day and the cast and directors decided that it was fitting to dedicate the show to her. “She would have loved this show….” someone in the cast said.
Cast members of “Much Ado About Nothing” point to heaven in Saturday night’s bows in honor and memory of Marian receptionist, Mrs. Karen Brown. “As soon as we found out the news, we knew we needed to do something in her memory,” junior Emily Doll said. Photo by Kateri Determan/Yearbook.