"Noises Off" is two farces in one. On the one hand, it's a play called "Nothing On", a traditional sex farce with the usual complement of doors opening and closing and people in underwear. On the other hand, it's a farce about the group of actors performing in the play "Nothing On", and their eventual disintegration into catastrophe as they get worn out by performing "Nothing On" and their own internal relationships. Half way through the set revolves around so that you see the 'behind the scenes' view of the play being performed.
I don't usually enjoy farces - something about the gradual slide into madness makes me yearn for a 'correct', happy ending. But this was an absolute hoot - several sections had me in stitches. It combines very clever scripting with brilliant timing and a lampooning of the traditional 'actor' temperament. If it comes to a playhouse near you, go and see it!
All posts licensed under the CC-BY-NC license. Author Paul Wayper.