There are two unlikely pairings in Cincinnati Shakespeare’s 1960s-flavored Much Ado About Nothing. First is the romance between Beatrice and Benedick, competing wits whose friends trick them into realizing they’re perfect for each other. That match-up triumphs here just as it should, thanks to a playful and well-paced performance by Bruce Cromer, as Shakespeare’s most determined bachelor, and solid if sometimes shrill work from Sherman Fracher, as his hostile leading lady.
These Bickersons deserve each other — delightfully.
Still more audacious is director Drew Fracher’s attempt to marry this well-mannered comedy — one whose dialogue is dominated by matters of birth, rank and parental authority, and whose plot hinges on a bride’s alleged promiscuity before her wedding day — with the acid-tinged, free-love vibe of a hippie commune.
Due to public demand, Cincy Shakespeare has extended Much Ado About Nothing through Oct. 2.
Go here to read Julie York Coppens' full review and get showtime and ticket details.