Einstein High School's weekend production of "Noises Off" was a laugh riot that featured great physical comedy, memorable characters and a company of remarkable performers.
"Noises Off" focuses on a quirky company of actors rehearsing and then touring the British farce "Nothing On." The audience sees Act 1 of the farce, which shows the company's troubled dress rehearsal. The second act of "Noises Off" shows the backstage chaos on opening night, and the third act is what the audience sees in the production that night. Playwright Michael Frayn has cleverly written this play within a play with memorable characters entangled in hilarious relationships.
Max Donohue (Tim), Morgan Ewing (Freddie/Philip), Cathy Ichniowski (Brooke/Vicki), Rebecca Pryor (Dotty/Mrs. Clackett) and Conor Scanlan (Garry/Roger) made "Noises Off" a spectacle that entertained everyone. The true acting highlight of the show, however, was Ichniowsky's brilliant portrayal of a dim-witted blonde. Her character had the smallest number of lines, yet she drew attention to her every move.
Act 2 follows the hilarious activities of the cast backstage and is completely reliant on physical comedy. Drinking, attempted murder, fighting, gorging and attempts to injure offensive company members culminate with the infamous ax scene in which all the characters fight for an ax in order to either kill a fellow cast member or to prevent it from happening.
Einstein's technicians did a great job with the show's technical requirements. The flimsy-looking, unfinished set and oddly placed lights suited the show perfectly. The costumes meshed well and fit every character.
Overall, Einstein High School took a challenging show and put it together to present a spectacle that brought tears of laughter to the eyes of many in the audience. The technicians and actors left no aspect of the show to chance, which paid off entirely in the end.
Blake High School
Hailed as "the funniest show ever written," "Noises Off" lived up to its reputation at Einstein High School on Saturday night. Michael Frayn's play is the story of a British theater company putting on a farce -- and how everything that can go wrong does, both onstage and off. This play within a play was wonderfully executed by Einstein performers and made for an evening filled with witty dialogue, priceless physical comedy and side-splitting action.
A production of "Noises Off" is no small feat, but the cast was able to meet the demands of the show.
The first act is a final dress rehearsal of the show "Nothing On," which the audience finds in hilarious disarray. The second act shows the insane goings-on backstage during the play's opening night, and the third act is an actual madcap performance of the farce. An extremely cohesive and talented ensemble supported the story well, all while using flawless British accents and adding their own unique flair to their characterization.
The technical work supported the extreme demands of the show: an elaborate set (which had to be rotated for the second act) included a second floor and featured seven working doors, all the while allowing actors to fall down stairs and slam into walls.
With very talented actors and a clear vision in the direction of such a complex show, the Einstein cast was able to handle all the challenges of "Noises Off" and make their audience shout with laughter.
Several actors stood out, including Rebecca Pryor as Dotty Otley and Benjamin Zucker as Selsdon Mowbray. The outstanding performance of the night was given by Cathy Ichniowski as the ditzy and constantly entertaining Brooke Ashton.
"Noises Off" was an enjoyable evening of hilarious theater, and Einstein should be commended for a show filled with well-earned laughs.