Friday, February 23

Tag: Lindsay Posner

Noises Off – Storyhouse Chester
North West

Noises Off – Storyhouse Chester

A packed Storyhouse laughed out loud at a comedy that still manages to deliver. It’s over 40 years since Michael Frayn wrote Noises Off, which has been described as ‘the funniest farce’ and is probably the inspiration for the ‘Goes Wrong’ series that is now popular.  Bedroom Farce was a type of theatre in the ‘60s and ‘70s, but then fell out of popularity when public sensibilities saw them as sexist and rather degrading. Noises Off is a play within a play about the farcical antics of a theatre company trying to present ‘Nothing On’ - an actual farce. Frayn shows that what goes on backstage is often funnier than what happens on stage but when it all gets mixed up, it’s hilarious. There have been many plays since that revisit this subject: David Tristam’s Little Grimley Series might...
Noises Off – The Lowry
North West

Noises Off – The Lowry

There have been a few fairly sniffy reviews of Noises Off recently. Both of this touring version of last year's 40th anniversary production and of the Michael Frayn classic more generally. The argument seems to go that the 1982 farce is showing its age and the same joke - a play within a play going all wrong - can be seen elsewhere. It is an interesting quirk of theatrical criticism that comedies are occasionally treated in this way. Dramas, on the other hand, become 'period pieces', described as 'kickstarting a trend'. What should matter, of course, is whether a play works in its own right. Yes, Noises Off is a product of its time, yes it has been lovingly ripped off in recent years but yes, in the right hands, it is still riotously funny.  The cast on the Lowry Lyric st...