Just in time for the holiday, City Lights' Filament podcast channel is releasing a new radio play of the classic Much Ado About Nothing on Feb. 9. This fresh adaptation by actor-playwright Max Tachis blends narration and Shakespeare to make the language and story accessible even to those who aren't Bard fans. The play stars many City Lights favorites, with a same-sex romance at its heart. In everyone's favorite will-they-or-won't-they love story, Maria Giere Marquis (Silent Sky) plays Benedick, and Melissa Jones (Tigers Be Still) is Beatrice. Meanwhile, Roneet Aliza Rahamim and Nick Mandracchia (who were both in The Merchant of Venice) play Hero and Claudio, whose love is perfect except that one of them might be dead. Director Caitlin Lawrence Papp is thrilled that Tachis has made the Benedick/Beatrice story a same-sex romance. "This is an idea that I have always wanted to bring to the stage: This could be changed into a beautiful LGBTQ romance because of the way the two characters never see that they can be together until their friends and loved ones give their blessing," she said. "They feel safe in their love for each other when they know that the people around them will support them." Other cast members are Tachis, Jeffrey Bracco and Tasi Alabastro (who were all also in The Merchant of Venice) and Ivette Deltoro (I and You). George Psarras is the sound designer, and Ron Gasparinetti is the production manager. Papp, Tachis and their team are donating their time and talent to create Much Ado as a fundraiser for City Lights. The radio play will be free to hear on City Lights' Filament website (cltc.org/filament) and all major podcast hubs. To contribute to the Much Ado fundraiser, go to cltc.org/donate or text your donation amount to 833-920-3003.