14 November 2013

Mini review: Noises Off

5 Pounds of Repertory
Noises Off
5 Pound Theatre
14 November
The Owl and the Pussycat
to 16 November

It should take weeks of dedicated rehearsal to nail the tightly choreographed farce of Noises Off, the 1982 play by Michael Frayn that ran for years in the UK. For the first show of the second 5 Pounds of Repertory season, the company had a week, as they do for every play in this season.

And they nailed it.

Noises Off is a who's-that-at-the-door farce about a knickers-down farce that's seen from its frighteningly-real dress rehearsal, then from backstage on a country tour and is finally presented to the audience on its closing night.

It's fucking hilarious and how they did it in a week is astounding. As last year's first five-plays-in-five-weeks experiment proved, the stress of such short rehearsal periods forces creativity and solutions that may never have come up were there time to ponder.

Director Jason Cavanagh has also turned this very British piece into something very local and very about making theatre in Melbourne. Sometimes, there's nothing wrong with a joke for the in crowd. He also jokes about the tour to Nunawading, but the Nunawading audiences are large and appreciative and would go mad for this play.

As is everyone who's seen it. There wasn't a spare seat tonight and there are only a few left for tomorrow and Saturday night. So book for the Saturday matinee now or miss out.

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