A Noise Within’s production of the ever-popular farce Noises Off combined with its Glendale location make for quite an enjoyable outing.
Right next to the theater is the Glendale Galleria and the Americana at Brand, home to cafés, restaurants, clothing stores, bookstores and everything you can imagine. If you’re looking to do something this weekend, grab a bite to eat, shop a little and catch a great and hilarious show.
As a repertory theatre, A Noise Within focuses on performing classical dramatic literature, and for this season it has chosen the timeless British farce Noises Off.
Noises Off is a play about a play. The show “Nothing’s On” is to be performed that night when disaster strikes. People are forgetting their lines, an actor is missing, the personal lives of the actors are interfering with the production and everything just seems to be going wrong.
The show is split into three acts. The first introduces the show and the actors, the second occurs during the actual show and the third presents another performance of the show.
Between each of these acts, the set is rotated 180 degrees, and during the second act the audience gets to see what happens behind the scenes.
The set was definitely one of this show’s strengths. Its two stories are decorated to resemble an old English home and it is built in two parts and completely movable, to execute the set change between the acts. Those who stuck around during the intermission got to see the impressive transformation.
To add to the experience, the actors performed the second act in almost complete silence, and making the backstage drama come alive with pantomime while the implied “show” goes on behind the background. It was a very physical show, and the actors pulled it off flawlessly.
The thrust stage had audiences on three sides, and the actors did a great job of playing to all of that. A Noise Within’s greatest strength was assembling a true ensemble in which each actor shined.
There were no standouts, and the group blended together perfectly despite the age range. The young actors worked well with the older actors and had great chemistry. Their blocking was precisely orchestrated with each humorous punch to the stomach and door slam perfectly timed.
The language is simple, and the storyline is easy to follow. The humor is very physical, typical of farce and had the audience laughing without inhibition.
Noises Off is a lively show that anyone who loves comedy would enjoy. The only catch to this particular show is the company’s “in your face” tactic of asking for donations.
Through the course of the show, the audience was asked numerous times to donate $50 a month for 50 months to help the company achieve their goal of expansion. It was easily brushed off, but annoying nonetheless. The price is a little unfriendly to the typical college student, but there are student deals to avoid the hassle.
Tickets are available on anoisewithin.org. The show runs until Jan. 30