In “Much Ado About Nothing,” the central theme is gossip and how it disrupts the relationship between couples who are in love. In the modern context, some changes to the plot and the setting are needed to adapt Shakespeare’s story. For example, in the first act, Duke Don Pedro returns to Messina from war with his soldiers. In the modern world, it would be more appropriate if the Duke returned from a foreign country where he stayed on business with his family and Benedick and Claudio. These changes are necessary since wars are less common in the modern world, and having the Duke, Claudio, and Benedick as a family would justify the traveling together. This essay will address some of the plots and setting changes needed to adapt “Much Ado About Nothing” to the contemporary world.
Next, the masquerade ball in Act II would be a welcome party arranged to celebrate Don Pedro’s return since masquerades are less common nowadays. During this act, Hero and Claudio’s marriage is arranged, but it is spoiled by Don John. It would be appropriate for Don John to use social media to send messages to people attending the party and spread rumors about Hero’s infidelity. It is common in the modern world to alter screenshots of messages as a way to deceive people, and Don John could use this method to break up this couple. In Act IV, the truth is uncovered by constable Dogberry, and in the modern context, it would be suitable if Dogberry was a family friend of Duke Don Pedro, who overheard the conversation between Borachio and Conrad and recorded it to show Claudio and others. In summary, this paper addresses some of the changes to “Much Ado About Nothing” that helps this story fit into the modern-day context.