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Thinkery & Verse Presents Shakespeare's
"Much Ado About Nothing"

Thinkery & Verse Presents Shakespeare(NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ) -- Thinkery & Verse presents William Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing from June 14 through July 7th at Assembly Hall at St John the Evangelist in New Brunswick. In the play, Benedict and Beatrice, Shakespeare’s whip-smart and quarrelsome lovers, must choose sides when their friends against each other over a young woman’s perceived infidelity. They are presenting this classic play with a modern edge in a historic building. Following this run, the play will then tour throughout the tri-state region.

The production will be directed by J. M. Meyer with a tight-knit cast of just three other actors, all of whom just graduated from the acting conservatory at Rutgers Mason Gross: Hannah Hale (Benedict / Verges / Conrade / Margaret), Regan Sims (Beatrice / Dogberry / Balthasar / Antonio/Friar), and Karen Alvarado (Claudio / Hero / Don John / Sexton). Ashley Basile (BFA Rutgers '18) created the props, posters, and set design for the performance, reprising the same position she held for Thinkery & Verse's workshop production of Bride of the Gulf in February and March. 

According to Karen Alvarado, "We have it in our power to make the art we want to make right here, right now--we don't need to wait on New York. We also have the opportunity to embrace a truly theatrical style. We're not pursuing perfection, we're pursuing an art that feels dynamic, more immediate, more alive, more passionate." 

"It's a gloriously rough and tumble Much Ado," Meyer adds. "I've never had this much fun in the rehearsal room. With only four actors, the collaboration is quite tight, earnest, and honest. It helps that Regan Sims and Hannah Hale came straight out of Mason Gross. Their training lends them a professional focus and confidence that let's us focus solely on the work."  

Throughout the process, the four artists have been accompanied by the steady coming and goings of the congregation at St. John the Evangelists, local artists invited to "crash" the rehearsals, and Karen and John's eight month-old baby, Matthew "Mateo" Marlowe. 

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"Mateo sets the energy level in the room," Alvarado says. "He lets us know when we need a break, when we need a snack, or when the play gets a little too scary. He can sit up, but he can't crawl yet: he's the very definition of a focused (if captive) audience member." 

The four person casts induces some zaniness. At one point, the whole cast turns into a pack of dogs to chase down the villains of the play. During a climactic wedding scene, the actors change characters with a breathless pace, but aim for drama, not just slapstick. 

Tickets are available online.  St John the Evangelist is located at 189 George Street in New Brunswick, New Jersey.

originally published: 2018-06-11 13:10:41

From Our Magazine

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It’s the end of the world as we know it and a burnout basement rock and roller, his ex-girlfriend, a rising star astrophysicist, just might have the key to surviving the black hole bearing down on the Earth.

Theatre Preview: June 2018

Theatre Preview: June 2018

A look at plays coming to stages around the Garden State. Remember to add your shows to the NJ Stage event calendar. Listings are always free and seen by thousands each week.

Theatre Preview: May 2018

Theatre Preview: May 2018

New Jersey Stage takes a look at shows coming to stages around the Garden State with our monthly theatre preview in NJ Stage Magazine.  Issue 46 also contains features on The Nerd at George Street Playhouse and Turning Off The Morning News at McCarter Theatre.  The magazine is available for free at and readable on any PC, tablet, or smartphone.

Turning off the  Morning News

Turning off the Morning News

The award-winning playwright and New Jersey native, Christopher Durang, is back with Turning Off The Morning News - his third World Premiere commission for McCarter Theatre in Princeton. It serves as a follow up to his Tony Award-winning play Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, and runs from May 4th through June 3rd.

Event calendar
Saturday, Jun 23, 2018


White Denim @ House of Independents, Asbury Park - 7:30pm

WICKED HOLLOW @ The Saint, Asbury Park - 7:00pm

Parsonsfield @ Hopewell Theater, Hopewell - 8:00pm

Under the Streetlamp @ The Levoy Theatre, Millville - 8:00pm

Memories: A Tribute to Barbra @ Broadway Theatre of Pitman, Pitman - 8:00pm

Princeton Festival Baroque Chamber Ensemble @ The Princeton Abbey, Princeton - 5:00pm

Rockland Bergen Music Festival @ German Masonic Park, Tappan - 11:00am

Big Jon Atkinson and Dean Shot @ Lizzie Rose Music Room, Tuckerton - 7:30pm


DLT Presents Leading Ladies @ Dover Little Theatre, Dover - 8:00pm

The Last 5 Years @ Eagle Theatre, Hammonton - 3:00pm and 8:00pm

Half Time @ Paper Mill Playhouse, Millburn - 1:30pm and 8:00pm

DIRTY DANCING @ Mayo Performing Arts Center (MPAC), Morristown - 2:00pm and 8:00pm

Wizard of Oz Auditions @ The Newton Theatre, Newton - 12:00pm

Phoenix Productions Presents: In the Heights @ Count Basie Center For The Arts, Red Bank - 8:00pm

HAIR: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical @ Black Box PAC, Teaneck - 9:30pm


Anthony DeVito, Greg Stone, James Mattern @ Tropicana Casino and Resort, Atlantic City - 9:00pm


WE ARE FAMILY: Celebrating InSpira's 16th Anniversary @ Mainstage @ Union County Performing Arts Center (UCPAC), Rahway - 12:00pm and 5:00pm

Inspirational Dance: Great Times in NYC @ South Orange Performing Arts Center (SOPAC), South Orange - 1:00pm and 5:00pm

View all events


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