Much Ado About Nothing

25 May 2009 - 27 June 2009

By William Shakespeare

I would rather hear my dog bark at a crow than a man swear he loves me

War-weary heroes return to their Mediterranean home, but now sparks fly as a different battle commences. Will love triumph?

Starring Shakespeare's most reluctant lovers, Much Ado is a joyous, wise-cracking comedy of love, honour and second chances.

The Guardian

''Timothy Sheader’s second season…gets off to a cracking start with this charming and crowd-pleasing account of Shakespeare’s wittiest comedy''

"A blistering performance from Samantha Spiro as a fiercely intelligent Beatrice full of late-blooming brio. You really do believe a star danced in the heavens when she was born."

What's On Stage

"Plenty of laughs…a robustly funny, fast-paced production."

Evening Standard

"Samantha Spiro was surely born to play the rapier-witted Beatrice... she fires out her lines delightfully and entirely dominates the stage."


"The Open Air Theatre exists as a lovely way to spend a summer’s evening and with this it certainly succeeds."

The Times

"Samantha Spiro is an energetic and intelligent Beatrice... a stellar performance."

Creative team

The cast

  • Borachio – Peter Bramhill
  • Benedick – Sean Campion
  • Don Pedro – Silas Carson
  • Watch/Messenger – Eke Chukwu
  • Leonato – Nigel Cooke
  • Verges – Simon Gregor
  • Balthasar – Tim Howar
  • Ursula – Sarah Ingram
  • Conrade – Chris Jared
  • Claudio – Ben Mansfield
  • Watch – Mark McGee
  • Watch/Sexton – Harry Myers
  • Dogberry – Anthony O'Donnell
  • Hero – Anneika Rose
  • Margaret – Annalisa Rossi
  • Beatrice – Samantha Spiro
  • Don John – Tim Steed
  • Waiting Woman – Kate Tydman
  • Friar Francis – David Whitworth