Sun & Moon Theatre

Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off: Much Ado About Nothing (2014)

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Photography by Matthew Bastone and Kolbrún Björt Sigfúsdóttir

Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off, a joyous adaptation of William Shakespeare’s wittiest, most compassionate comedy, Much Ado About Nothing, has been vibrantly transported from 16th Century Italy to Britain at the end of World War II. It is 1945, the boys are finally coming home from the war, only to enter into another form of battle. Young lovers Claudio and Hero are to be married, while the idea of marriage is inconceivable to the ‘older and wiser’ bickering reluctant lovers, Beatrice and Benedick, whose ‘merry war’ results in the wittiest and sharpest sparring in Shakespeare’s canon. However not everyone that returned from the war came back unscathed …

Featuring the glorious music of George and Ira Gershwin, prepare to be dazzled and delighted by this voyage into the 1940s. Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off: Much Ado About Nothing will be a bittersweet yet joyfully nostalgic exploration into one of Shakespeare’s most beloved texts, featuring love, misunderstandings, folly, celebration, honour, loss, and most importantly, second chances.

Directed by Melissa Barrett & Dana Bowman
Produced by Melissa Barrett


Rosie Archer: Margaret & Sexton
Melissa Barrett: Hero
Emily Carding: Beatrice
Jake Francis: Don John & Watchman
Ben Goulding: Verges & Friar Francis
M. Chase Grant: Benedick
Chris Harknett: Borachio & Balthasar
David Johnson: Claudio
Richard Knox: Leonato
Luke Lane: Don Pedro
Becky Jade Pratt: Conrade & Antonia
Bryony Reynolds: Dogberry & Ursula


James Claughton: Clarinet
Jonathon Harrison: Drums
Alan Kent: Trumpet
James Thomas Lloyd: Baritone Saxophone
Mark Stanton: Trombone
Sophie Thackray: Alto Saxophone

‘What a terrific performance! I hope you guys are justly proud of yourselves, you were absolutely super!’

‘Thoroughly enjoyed the show tonight, fantastic music, delicious cupcakes and wonderful acting’

This project was the winner of the Cymbeline Prize, a prestigious award set up by a donation from a benefactor of the University of Exeter.

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