July 21, 2017 @ 8:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Coronado Playhouse
1835 Strand Way
Coronado, CA 92118
Grant Funded - FREE ADMISSION. You may select up to 6 free tickets.
Coronado Playhouse Box Office


July 21 – August 13, 2017
Thursday, Friday, Saturday @8pm Sunday @2pm

By William Shakespeare

Director Kit Fugrad

“Some Cupid kills with arrows, some with traps.”
Please note that Much Ado About Nothing is now sold-out. We operate a stand-by line for returned tickets from around 45 minutes before every performance and while we can usually seat everyone, we cannot guarantee stand-by admission.

Shakespeare’s comic romance is set amidst the high spirits of a post-war house party. Don Pedro, Claudio, Benedick and all their troops, recently returned from deployment in Afghanistan, are able to relax and enjoy the company and hospitality of their friend Leonato, his daughter Hero and niece Beatrice.

Claudio loves Hero and Hero loves Claudio. Nothing seems capable of tearing them apart. Benedick loves Beatrice and Beatrice loves Benedick, although neither will admit it. Nothing seems capable of bringing them together. However, these warring rivals forge a partnership in order to defend truth and honor, and salvage the true love of Hero and Claudio after deceptions wreck the lovers’ wedding day. This is a different kind of battlefield altogether.

Driven along by a romance all the more charming for being unacknowledged, and played out with an explosion of schemes, strategies and antics Much Ado About Nothing is a miracle of comic and dramatic suspense and gives us, in the bantering Beatrice and Benedick, two of Shakespeare’s wittiest, most lovable pair of lovers.

Much Ado About Nothing is one of Shakespeare’s most frequently produced plays around the world and has inspired at least 5 widely differing film adaptations including award-winners by Sir Kenneth Branagh (1993) and Joss Whedon (2011). Josie Rourke’s 2011 witty and inventive stage production in London’s West End starring Dr. Who favorites David Tennant and Catherine Tate, won no less than 6 Broadway.com awards (including Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Director and Best Play!) and brought Shakespeare to new audiences in a fun, original and tangible way. Coronado Playhouse aims to do the same.

21st Annual Free Classic Play at Coronado Playhouse


Reserve Tickets!

Admission is FREE thanks to a grant from the City of Coronado. Reservation is still necessary to guarantee admission.
You may select up to 6 free tickets.

Meet the Cast

  • Steve Murdock – Don Pedro
  • Jacob Harr – Don John
  • Samuel Young – Claudio
  • Brendan MacNeil – Benedick
  • Edward Houser – Borachio
  • Matthew Noll – Conrade
  • Christopher Braden – Balthasar
  • Steven Jensen – Leonato
  • Andrew Softley – Antonio
  • Sarah Alida LeClair – Beatrice
  • Anna Couvrette – Hero
  • Sofia Scafidi – Margaret
  • Alaina Fordice – Ursula
  • Christian Marler – Father Francis
  • Kaari McBride – Dogberry
  • Mariam Babayan – Verges
  • Isabelle Pickering – Gail Seacole, Watchman & Attendant
  • Russell Clements – Hugh Oatcake, Watchman
  • Cecily Keppel – Attendant

The Playbill

The program can be downloaded here.


Photo Credit: Ken Jacques


Picture 1 of 29


Press Release not yet available for this production.


Reviews are not yet available for this production.

Cast Bios


Steve MurdockSTEVE MURDOCK (Don Pedro) A frequent sound designer, actor and director, Steve most recently directed productions of The Dresser and November and appeared as Gabriel Hayes in the original production of Hope at the 10th Avenue Arts Center. Other notable roles include Charles Condomine in Blithe Spirit, Jean in Rhinoceros, Dr. Jekyll in Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, George Schneider in Chapter Two, Alan Raleigh in God of Carnage, Sir Robert Chiltern in An Ideal Husband, Henry II in Lion in Winter, Jonathan Brewster in Arsenic and Old Lace, C.K. ‘Dexter’ Haven in The Philadelphia Story, and Edward de Vere in The Beard of Avon. Love to Jen, and the Casserole Kitty.

Jacob HaarJACOB HARR (Don John) is twenty years of age and has been doing theater ever since he was in junior high school. He has been a part of the theater company at San Diego Mesa College for about a year now. Much Ado About Nothing is not only his first professional performance he’s done on stage, it is also the first Shakespeare play he’s ever been a part of. Performances before this one include an extra in Bye Bye Birdie, Dussel in The Diary of Anne Frank, Tevye in Fiddler on the Roof, a brother in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and Gary in I Hate Hamlet.

Samuel YoungSAMUEL YOUNG (Claudio) is thrilled to be making his return to the Coronado Playhouse for another summer Shakespeare show. He was seen last summer here as Horatio in Coronado Playhouse’s production of Hamlet. He was last seen this year as Sherriff Heck Tate in Pickwick Players’ To Kill A Mockingbird, and played Ryu Nakata in Trinity Theater’s production of Maple & Vine. Last season he also directed the play Sylvia at Patio Playhouse in Escondido. He would really like to thank his family and friends for all of their continuous, tireless support. “Words are easy, like the wind; Faithful friends are hard to find.” — W. Shakespeare

Brendan McNeilBRENDAN MCNEIL (Benedick) From Miles City, Montana, Brendan MacNeil has been involved in theater for much of his life. Whether it would be acting, being a member of the stage crew, set design, or lighting, there has not been much that he hasn’t done in the theater world. He has performed as The Baker (Into the Woods), Lenny Ganz (Rumors), Perchik (Fiddler on the Roof), Jud Fry (Oklahoma!), the Evil Moose (Evil Dead the Musical), and recently as Matthew Garrick (Hope). He attended the University of Montana Western in Dillon, Montana where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Literature and Writing, Minored in theater, and obtained his Associate of Arts in Music. He would like to thank the Coronado Playhouse and Director Kit Fugrad for this opportunity and hopes you all enjoy the show.

Edward HouserEDWARD HOUSER (Borachio) is thrilled to be joining Coronado Playhouse in his first production. He has a passion for Shakespeare, and has previously played Borachio, as well as Thisbe/Flute in Midsummer, and Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet. His musical performances include Les Miserables and HMS Pinafore. He lives in downtown San Diego, and when he is not on stage, he is a Realtor and Navy Reservist.

Matthew NollMATTHEW NOLL (Conrade) is excited to be making his Coronado Playhouse debut in Much Ado. Matthew is a graduate of Mesa College’s Company acting program here her performed in the student-directed One Acts, played Joe Keller in All My Sons and Ivan in Art. Recently he appeared in They’re Playing Our Song at Lamplighters.

Christopher BradenCHRISTOPHER BRADEN (Balthasar) is very excited to make his acting debut at Coronado Playhouse. Shakespeare has always been a favorite of his and he is always pleased to perform it. Some of his favorite roles include Estragon (Waiting for Godot), Big Jule (Guys and Dolls), Neal Tildon (1940’s Radio Hour) and Artie (House of Blue Leaves). Chris has performed in various places around San Diego and hopes to make a career out of acting one day. Apart from acting, Chris also enjoys teaching martial arts and learning more about the arts. Thank you very much for your support of the arts and enjoy the show!

Steven JensenSTEVEN JENSEN (Leonato) has appeared in several concerts and cabarets at Coronado Playhouse and in thirteen plays here since 2010. Those include Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet, Tartuffe, The Importance of Being Earnest, Spamalot, Sugar, The Drowsy Chaparone, The Man Who Came to Dinner, and The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas. A sample of other plays: Who Am I This Time?, King Lear, and Macbeth at Vanguard; The Tempest at Poor Players; Edward II at Diversionary; Julius Caesar at New Village Arts; Medea and The Oresteia at Sixth @ Penn; Romeo and Juliet and Much Ado About Nothing at Octad One; The Gondoliers, Candide, Die Fledermaus, The Mikado, and others at Lyric Opera San Diego; and I Think We’re All Bozos On This Bus at the Bureau of Western Mythology. Steven teaches chemistry at Sweetwater High School and for ten years was a silent supernumerary at San Diego Opera.

Andrew SoftleyANDREW SOFTLEY (Antonio) looks forward to his first production with the Coronado Playhouse. His recent roles include Rudolf Bauer from Bauer, Wally Smith from The Fabulous Lipitones, Harry the Horse from Guys and Dolls, and the Foreman and Bamatabois from Les Miserables.

Sarah Alida LeClaireSARAH ALIDA LECLAIR (Beatrice) M.M. Performance, SDSU; The Witch in Into the Woods; Amneris in Elton John’s Aida; Suzette in Don’t Dress for Dinner; Marsinah in Kismet; Mary Stone in The Devil and Daniel Webster; Jenny Diver in The Beggar’s Opera, and was most recently seen in ion theatre’s production of Jason Robert Brown’s The Last Five Years as Cathy. Sarah has performed with the La Jolla Theatre Ensemble as Maggie the Cat in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, and with San Diego Opera’s Words and Music Program, most notably as the Fairy Godmother in Zombie Cinderella. She has also appeared in San Diego short film (Snarky Productions) and local television (“En Vivo” variety show/public access)

Anna CouvretteANNA COUVRETTE (Hero) is honored to be a part of the cast of Much Ado About Nothing, making her debut performance at the Coronado Playhouse. A San Diego native, and graduate of the Canyon Crest Academy Theater Conservatory, Anna is currently a junior at the University of Southern California. Anna has previously played Hero, with the Aeneid Theater Company. Other recent roles include Maria in Twelfth Night, Catherine in Love’s Labour’s Lost, and Elise in The Miser. Endless love and appreciation for her mother, who taught her everything she knows.

Sofia ScafidiSOFIA SCAFIDI (Margaret) is excited to be a part of her first production with Coronado Playhouse. She has a background in musical theatre and has been involved in the performing arts since the age of 13. Her previous credits include; A Christmas Carol (Tiny Tim), The Imaginary Invalid (Louisanne), Bye Bye Birdie (Ensemble), Hairspray (Ensemble), The Addams Family (Wednesday Addams), and Pippin (Ensemble). She graduated from Point Loma High School in 2016 and is now currently studying theatre and dance at Grossmont College. She would like to thank her director Kit Fugrad, Coronado Playhouse, and the rest of the cast of Much Ado About Nothing for this wonderful opportunity.

Alaina FordiceALAINA FORDICE (Ursula) has been acting since she was a young child. She moved to Southern California from her hometown in Mississippi three years ago to study acting and film at John Paul the Great Catholic University, where she will graduate with a Bachelors in Communications Media this December. Her previous credits include: Ariel in The Little Mermaid, Paulina in The Winter’s Tale, Electra in Cats, Alice in Almost Wonderland, and The Wicked Witch in The Land of OZ. Much Ado About Nothing will be her debut performance at the Coronado Playhouse.

Christian MarlerCHRISTIAN MARLER (Father Francis) majored in drama at USC. Over a span of 35 years as an actor, Chris has appeared in almost fifty productions. Some highlights include playing the title characters in Macbeth and Richard III, appearing as multiple characters in the 8 ½-hour stage version of Charles Dickens’ Nicholas Nickelby, and performing Shakespeare for at least two audiences of over two thousand people. Chris has won multiple awards for acting, including Best Actor in a Minor Supporting role for last year’s Coronado Playhouse production of Hamlet, where he played the Ghost. Chris was a founding company member of the Redlands Shakespeare Festival, and has performed leading and supporting roles in more than a dozen Shakespeare productions including Julius Caesar (Cassius), The Comedy of Errors (Antipholus of Syracuse), The Taming of the Shrew (Hortensio), Hamlet (Claudius; Ghost), Much Ado About Nothing (Don John), and Antony and Cleopatra (Enobarbus).

Kaari McBrideKAARI MCBRIDE (Dogberry) is excited to be performing in his first role with the Coronado Playhouse. He starting acting at Junior Theatre in 2011 before moving to Young Actors’ Theatre in 2016. Kaari isn’t the best at writing bios or referring to himself in the third person. His favorite roles include Lumiere in Beauty & The Beast, Donkey in Shrek the Musical, and probably Dogberry in Much Ado About Nothing.

MariamMARIAM BABAYAN (Verges) is very proud to be joining the cast of Much Ado About Nothing in her debut role as Verges. An avid Shakespeare enthusiast, Mariam is also serving as an assistant director in this production. She has taught Shakespeare in the English department at Mesa College, and In her free time enjoys hiking and cooking.

Isabelle PickeringISABELLE PICKERING (Gail Seacole, Watchman & Attendant) is thrilled to be working with such an incredible cast for her debut at the Coronado Playhouse. She is a musical theater major at American University in Washington DC, most recently finishing a semester at Smithsonian Institution’s Discovery Theater. Favorite local and educational credits include Mary Zimmerman’s Argonautika, The Laramie Project, Spring Awakening, The Addams Family, Sweeney Todd, and It’s a Bird…It’s a Plane…It’s Superman! This fall, Isabelle is excited to be a part of a premiere modern adaptation of Arthur Schnitzler’s La Ronde in DC. She thanks both her San Diego and DC communities, and of course to her parents, for their tireless love and support.

Russell ClementsRUSSELL CLEMENTS (Hugh Oatcake, Watchman) is ecstatic to be back at the CPH! Past credits include Pepper/Robert (Untold)(Fringe) Preacher (Violet in Concert),Clown (The 39 Steps)(CPH), Panch (Spelling Bee), Cogsworth (Beauty and the Beast), Tevye (Fiddler on the Roof) (YAT), Derrick (Know More!), Pappy (And Then They Came for Me), Faustus (Tragical History of Dr. Faustus), Bishop (See How They Run), Russell (Shakespeare Abridged), Mushnik (Little Shop of Horrors) and Tartuffe (Tartuffe) (Salomon Theater, PLNU). Russell would like to thank his family for their constant support! Phil 4:4

Cecily KeppelCECILY KEPPEL (Attendant) is excited to return to Coronado Playhouse for one of her favorite shows! Her recent credits include The Dresser (Lamplighters Community Theatre), The Taming of the Shrew (InnerMission Productions), Hamlet (Coronado Playhouse) and The Supporting Cast (Lamplighters Community Theatre). Many thanks to the cast and crew that contributed so much to make this production fantastic!

Creative Team


Kit FugradKIT FUGRAD (Director) is ecstatic for the opportunity to direct Much Ado for Coronado Playhouse. His previous productions as director include Into the Woods (Avo Playhouse), A Christmas Carol: The Musical (Old Town Temecula Theatre), Romeo and Juliet and Much Ado About Nothing (both with Frangipani Winery), The Clean House and Run For Your Wife (both with Play With Your Food Productions). Kit has also enjoyed performing for CPH, having been in A Little Night Music in 2016, and playing with puppets for Avenue Q in 2015 where he won an award for playing a grumpy character who sang lovingly and enthusiastically about porn. Kit offers immense thanks to his lovely Much Ado family for its time and contributions, and he is grateful to the wonderful folks at CPH for trusting him with a classic that has endured for hundreds of years. “Act well your part, there all the honour lies.” – Alexander Pope

Candace CarbajalCANDACE CARBAJAL (Choreographer) is an accomplished dancer and choreographer whose work has been performed by theater companies throughout Southern California and Arizona. Choreography credits include: Beauty and the Beast (Patio Playhouse), Sheila (Grand Facade Theatre Prod.), Willy Wonka (Pickwick Players-Aubrey Award Best Ensemble), and The Secret Garden (PaccoArts). Acting credits include: Babette in Beauty and the Beast, Rosie in Bye Bye Birdie, Anita in West Side Story (ITL Award Nominee), Mabel Chiltern in An Ideal Husband (Aubrey Award), and Anne Egerman in A Little Night Music. Ms. Carbajal currently choreographs and instructs dance throughout San Diego. She will next been seen reprising her role as Anita in Theatre Royale’s production of West Side Story in August. She would like to thank Kit and the whole production team for having her on board and the cast for their hard work and dedication.

THOMAS HAINE (Co-Producer) is a current Board member of the Coronado Playhouse. Tom has extensive directing credits which include Tartuffe, Romeo and Juliet, King Lear, Hamlet, Macbeth, Hedda Gabler, You Can’t Take It With You, Bury the Dead, Rumors and Dearly Departed. He has received formal training in directing from the Berkeley Rep and from Cambridge University in the UK. He has also trained with the Old Globe’s Jonathan McMurtry, Dakin Matthews, and Brendon Fox and with the San Diego Rep’s Todd Salovey and Sam Woodhouse. He is a graduate of the British American Drama Academy Mid-Summer Oxford Program (BADA) in 2010 and practices immigration and criminal law in his spare time.

CHRIS POWELL (Co-Producer) is excited to be working again with Tom Haine and CPH. Other work includes Assistant Director for the award-winning productions of Sleeping Beauty and the Rose Taboo, Best little Whorehouse, Grease, Drowsy Chaperone, Cinderella, Dames at Sea and The IT Girl. Also, produced Romeo and Juliet,Tartuffe, Hamlet and Cabaret shows at CPH. Other shows that he has been a part of (Diversionary Theatre) are the critically acclaimed productions Thrill Me!, YANK ! The Musical, The Busy World is Hushed , Torch Song Trilogy, The New Century, Dooley, Corpus Christi and many others.

KATHY PARKS (Production Stage Manager) is delighted to be working with such a creative and talented cast and crew. She has worked behind the scenes for numerous shows at Coronado Playhouse, Pickwick Players and Trinity Theatre and is grateful to her sons, Sean and Connor Boyd for bringing her into the world of theatre.

BARRON HENZEL (Set Designer)

STEVE MURDOCK (Sound Designer) Previous productions at Coronado Playhouse include Boeing Boeing, Tempest, Romeo and Juliet and Blithe Spirit. Other recent productions include Next Fall, November, and The Buddy Holly Story at OnStage Playhouse, Loves and Hours at Scripps Ranch Theater, Hope at 10th Avenue Art Center, Last Train to Nibroc at Different Stages, They’re Playing Our Song and The Dresser at Lamplighters.

CHLOE CLARK (Lighting Designer) Originally from Phoenix, AZ, Chloe first discovered her love for theatre tech while in high school where she designed lights for The 39 Steps, Night of the Living Dead, Footloose and three dance showcases. She moved to San Diego to study Lighting Design at SDSU and will graduate in 2019. At SDSU she has worked as LX and theatre tech on many shows and has designed their recent production of The Vagina Monologues. Other lighting design credits include Beauty and the Beast and The Wizard of Oz for Dance Studio 111 in Arizona.

SARAH ROBINSON (Costume Designer) was born and raised in San Diego, California. She holds Bachelor’s degrees in Theatre and Psychology from UC San Diego. Sarah now attends Alliant International University and recently advanced to doctoral candidacy in Clinical Psychology. Costume credits include: Meet Me in St. Louis, Heaven Can Wait, The Sound of Music, Freedom Train, Company, Who Am I This Time? And Other Conundrums of Love (Vanguard Theatre), Altar Boyz (Coronado Playhouse), Bedrooms and Boyfriends 2: My Life as a Sitcom (Compulsion Dance Theatre). She is thrilled to be on the production team of her favorite comedy and is excited to continue working with the Coronado community. Thanks to family and the King.

PAMELA EVERETT (Properties Designer, Set and House Dressing) is thrilled to be the Resident Properties Designer at CPH and to have the opportunity it affords to work with this amazing production staff and cast! Pam has been with CPH for 12 years assisting with too many shows to list and has received numerous Blue Ribbon and Act Awards over the years. In May, Pam received a 2017 Star Award from the San Diego Performing Arts League for volunteerism with CPH. Thank you to the Board and everyone involved at CPH for this great honor. Thank you to my wonderful loving family, Dennis and Amanda for enabling me, putting up with me (and the mess at home) and for their assistance in making everything happen.

MEKALA SRIDHAR (Assistant Director) is happy to have had the experience of assistant directing for Coronado Playhouse’s production of Much Ado About Nothing. She is currently a student at Sarah Lawrence College, studying theatre and literature. Recently she directed a tap piece called (re)Move West, and she has also assistant directed for both classical productions like, Hamlet and devised pieces, like Section 33 at Sarah Lawrence. Mekala is thankful to have had the opportunity to work with everyone involved in this production and be a part of this process.

MARIAM BABAYAN (Assistant Director) Please see biography under Cast Bios, Verges

 (Audio Mixer)

 (Lighting Board Operator)


Community Theatre is made by, with and for the community in which it is performed. Coronado Playhouse is committed to pursuing community theatre in the truest sense of the words by giving back to the people of San Diego County and using our public platform to help those in need.

During the run of Much Ado About Nothing, please help us meet our yearly growing budget requirements during our annual membership and fund-raising drive.