Hilarity and chaos ensue in Curtain Call Theatre’s production of Michael Frayn’s ingenious play-within-a-play Noises Off, about a third-rate British acting troupe desperately trying to stage and tour a third-rate farce called Nothing On.
Noises Off is a hysterical story about a theater troupe’s misadventures. As actors in this play-within-a-play rehearse, forgotten lines, dropped trousers and lost plates of sardines create onstage pandemonium. Meanwhile, it is total chaos backstage as love triangles, petty bickering and ruined affairs lead to pratfalls, flying props and more than one bloody nose. In the end, at the frenetic final performance, everything merges into one perfectly ravaged and wholly uproarious theatrical nervous breakdown.
Noises Off premiered in London in 1982 and won the London Evening Standard Award for Best Comedy. It opened on Broadway in 1983 and was nominated for four Tony Awards including the 1984 Award for Best Play. In 1992, Marty Kaplan wrote a screenplay for Noises Off and turned it into a successful film directed by Peter Bogdanovich. The play was revived on Broadway in 2001 and was nominated for the 2002 Tony for Best Revival of a Play.