Noises Off

Wilma’s Rating:  [rating=4]

Where: Novello Theatre, Aldwych, London, WC2B 4LD
How Much:  £10-£55 
How long: 2hrs 30mins (including one interval)
Running until: 30th June 2012  

Books £8-£15.99
Mug £8
Tea Towel £6.50
Bag £10
Poster £3.50
Programme £4

Wine £5/£6
Beer £3.50/£4.50
Water £2

Review performance date:
Friday 11th May 2012


Noises Off is a total farce .A show within a show divided into parts. One of the most hilarious shows in the West End today, it leaves you thinking about what really goes on back stage at the theatre. We imagine the cast patiently waiting for their nod to go onto the stage but as Noises Off goes to show, the reality can be quite different.Following a successful run at the Old Vic Theatre, Noises Off has now transferred to the Novello Theatre, Aldwych for a strictly limited run until 30th June.

The concept of Noises Off came about in 1970 when Michael Frayn was watching a theatre performance from the side of the stage. He found himself watching what was going on out of sight of the audience, more that what was onstage, which led him to thinking it was the perfect storyline for a play.

Act 1 – Dress Rehearsal 

For the first act we see a group of actors in their final rehearsal for their touring show ‘Nothing On’ which is set to open the following night. It is late and nothing is ready. The set is falling down and the cast are struggling to remember their lines.

Act 2 – Two weeks into the tour

During the interval, the stage is turned around. Act 2 is set a few weeks into the tour we see the same show as Act 1 but this time,  shown from the backstage perspective. Problems start to show up backstage and love triangles take priority over the show they are performing.

Act 3 – The final leg of the tour a few months later.

Returning to the audience view, and months later towards the end of the tour. Carnage has broken out, relationships have broken down and everyone is drinking in excess. The last thing on the casts mind is putting on a great performance and they spend the whole act running around fighting with each other.

Each act shows the same scene being played but from a different time, showing how working on a touring show can become tricky and leaves you wondering if you have ever seen a show with similar backstage behaviour that you didn’t know about!

I ‘ve seen this show three times now and it get funnier every time. You really must see this show while it is on in the West End!