Berlioz was enthralled by Shakespeare and this opera is a version he produced of Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing. A very sarcastic Beatrice constantly hurls barbed comments at Benedict and he replies in kind. Despite this, these strong feeling are eventually changed into a reluctant acknowledgement of love and they marry rather hastily.
One wonders how it would work out? But not to worry, we don’t get to see them experiencing domestic bliss. Feminists should beware of this opera, it supports the old clichés of women reluctantly placing themselves under the domination of men. What on earth would Shakespeare think if he had to try and write a play about equal partnerships in modern marriage?
The music was great and we enjoyed this teasing opera that has a happy ending.