BC Presents “Much Ado About Nothing”

Trumpet solos  and saxophone  melodies  fill  a  dance  hall  as  women  in short,  fringe  dresses smoke cigarettes  in  long  holders.  Men  in suits  and  waistcoats  dressed to  kill  with  their slick  hair  and slick mustaches. Flappers, pearls, fedoras, two­tone oxford shoes and toe­tapping jazz paint the atmosphere of the Roaring Twenties. During this period, the  economy  and social  culture prospered bringing with it  a wave of dynamic life.

Rewind  centuries  past  to simpler  times  in England where  the  economy  and  lifestyle was  bleak  and unstable due to religious tensions. However, during the Elizabethan Age respect was given to the arts as the reigning female monarch favored  culture. Thus  gave  “the  greatest  playwright”  a  platform to freely create works that have endured the ages and continue to be performed.

The Brooklyn College Department of Theatre’s installment of “Much Ado About Nothing” combines both great eras. Under the direction of Vik Sivalingam, the cast of seventeen brought to life a world where Shakespeare meets Jay Gatsby. A modern and fun twist on a classic.

Love, gossip and mischief brews in the fictional New York town of Messina. As its name suggests, the play is a huge commotion and frantic brouhaha of matters that are unimportant which creates a blind eye to the matters that are ­ in this play, that matter being ignored is love. A romantic comedy at best, “Much Ado  About  Nothing”  has  all  the  components  for  an  entertaining  show.  A  villain,  a  bachelor  and bachelorette stuck in a game of unrequited love, a maiden wrongfully accused, an “ass” of a constable ­  all these ingredients in the pot simmered to become a flavorful stew that the audience ate up gratefully.

Indeed, we left nothing on our plates  and our  appetites for  culture was satiated, but we didn’t mind having  another  nibble  or  two.  “Encore!”  cried  an  audience member  as  the  ending  dance  number (yes, dessert in the form of a lively jig was served after our main course) closed the play.

“I have the great fortune to work with a talented and brilliantly willing company of actors,” Sivalingam released in the playbill. “Working together throughout the play, we have found the characters to be most of all human.”

A cast mainly comprised of Brooklyn College’s own talented student actors and actresses performed with professionalism and passion. Well cast, each actor played their stage counterpart with skill. If there was a proper adjective for the execution, it is “fun”. Many a time, I smiled, laughed, clapped and wished to join the cast as they danced. The production I beheld was indeed “fun.”

Highly recommended by yours truly, consider seeing “Much Ado About Nothing”. It will be playing at various times until Saturday, the 27th. Tickets for students are discounted at $10.

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