Theatre Information

Tuscarora High School Noises Off

By • Nov 28th, 2013 • Category: Cappies, Virginia

All though the noise may be off backstage, the uproarious laughter from the audience was anything but quiet during Tuscarora High School’s performance of Noises Off. And who can blame them! What’s funnier than a show within a show, laughable love triangles, girls in their “knickers,” and sardines that can never seem to make their proper exit off stage?

Written in 1982 by Michael Frayn, Noises Off portrays the relationships of a group of actors performing an outright awful show called Nothing On. After premiering at the Lyric Theatre in London where it was granted the Evening Standard Award for Best Comedy, the British farce continued on to New York in 1983. Noises Off was performed at the Brookes Atkinson Theatre on Broadway and after 553 performances, the slapstick comedy earned Tony nominations in several areas. Finally the show was awarded with a Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Ensemble. In 1992 the stage production was sent to the big screen in a film adaptation by Marty Kaplan, staring big names such as Carol Burnett and Christopher Reeve.

Tuscarora High’s performance of Noises Off was notably one of the most entertaining productions of the year thus far. The play itself proved highly interesting due to its peculiar structure. The first act takes place during the rehearsal of Nothing On, the second act was played in silence backstage during a performance, and the third act closed the show of a production literally on its last leg. With the two worlds, the play-within-a-play Nothing On and the actor’s private relationships, beautifully intertwined by the small yet capable cast, the fast-paced British comedy commanded the stage.

Anchored by the dynamic acting of Stephen Coakley (Garry Lejeune) and Arianna Dudley (Mrs. Clackett), the actors playing in Nothing On lit up the stage and never once left the audience with a dull scene. Sean Phillips (Lloyd Dallas) portrayed a convincing director torn apart by a love triangle and a show where each rehearsal is worse than the last. A key member in this “behind the scenes” love affair was Carly Smith (Brooke Ashton), who delighted the audience with her ditzy persona and overall refreshing demeanor. An especially commendable aspect of this show was the actor’s dedication to physical comedy and perfect team work as a cast. Darby Pierce (Belinda Blaire) and Ben Fuhrmann (Tim Allgood), too, enchanted the stage with their dynamic comedic timing as well as their commitment to their complex characters.

The technical aspects behind this production were just as strong as the performing cast. From the creative set to the overdone props and the workable costumes, these facets only made Noises Off all the better. Notably, in Act 2 the set turned around to show the “behind stage” area, and the entire air of the show changed. Characters were free to portray themselves, relationships were discovered, and overall hilarity ensued. Not only was the entire set workable, but believable from the audience’s perspective as well.

Tuscarora High School’s rendition of Noises Off was nothing short of a side-splitting experience enjoyed by all, thanks to the incredible cast, and one that will not soon be forgotten!

by Sarah Midolo of Loudoun Valley HS

Photo Gallery

Colin Muldoon (Freddy/Philip) Arianna Dudley (Dotty/Mrs. Clackett)
Colin Muldoon (Freddy/Philip)
Arianna Dudley (Dotty/Mrs. Clackett)
Ryan Phillips (Selsdon/Burglar) Carly Smith (Brooke/Vickie) and Stephen Coakley (Garry/Roger)
Ryan Phillips (Selsdon/Burglar)
Carly Smith (Brooke/Vickie) and Stephen Coakley (Garry/Roger)
Ben Fuhrmann (Tim)
Ben Fuhrmann (Tim)

Photos by Stephen Coakley

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