REVIEW: Much Ado About Nothing, Highdown Gardens

Ross Muir as Benedick and Susanna Gordon as Beatrice, with David Gerits as Don John in the background
Ross Muir as Benedick and Susanna Gordon as Beatrice, with David Gerits as Don John in the background

HIGHDOWN Gardens in Worthing is the perfect place for a bit of Shakespearean cavorting.

And there was much fun to be had with Rainbow Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing last week, including the welcome return of Ross Muir to the fold.

His wide-eyed portrayal of Benedick was just a joy to behold, perfectly coupled with Susanna Gordon as Beatrice.

Hero and Claudio, the other key couple, were also well cast, with young Abigail Watton and Oliver Byng putting in star performances.

Lee Payne always seems to stand out from the crowd with Rainbow Shakespeare, projecting his voice perfectly for the al fresco setting. This time, he played Don Pedro and was in fine form, dominating his scenes.

Peter Goode, another Rainbow favourite, gave an absolutely hilarious performance as Dogberry, the constable in charge of the watch, and we were even treated to some of his singing in his secondary role as Balthasar.

In the role of the villain, David Gerits gave us a rather jolly and camp verion of Don John but it worked in the setting.

All the cast deserve the highest praise for their brilliant effort on Sunday afternoon, when a decent-sized audience turned out despite the torrential rain.

The show must go on, and it most certainly did, with some of the crew even taking the trouble to serve free tea and hot chocolate in the interval to help warm the crowd.

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