A slapstick comedy about theatre life is up next at Players by the Sea. Noises Off! opens on Friday, Dec. 7.
Written by Michael Frayn, Noises Off! is a play-within-a-play. The farce offers a look at the inner workings of live theater, providing a comical look at a cast and crew’s behind the scenes antics.
Tom Fallon is directing Noises Off!. With a career in theater and film spanning 45 years, Fallon loves and understands the organized chaos that happens onstage and offstage in the theater community. In addition to Players by the Sea, he has worked locally with the Alhambra, ABET, the now defuncted Atlantic Theatres, Limelight Theatre and The 5 & Dime. He’s also worked on films including GI Jane, Secondhand Lions and White Fang, among others. Fallon is a member of the Directors Guild of America, Screen Actors Guild and Actors Equity Association.
“In the theater world, Noises Off! is one of those shows everyone knows about,” Fallon said. “This particular play shows what goes on behind the scenes and it’s a rare treat.”
The story follows the director of a second-rate theater company who is desperately trying to get a disastrous production of a British adult-farce on its feet. From final rehearsals to opening night and onto the tour, the play reveals the cast’s onstage and offstage antics as things fall apart. With slamming doors and sardines, it looks at the follies of theatre folk whose susceptibility to out-of-control egos, memory loss and passionate affairs turn every show into an adventure.
“It’s one of those shows that every theater does it is brave enough,” said Cathy O’Brien, who plays the roles of Dotty Otley and Mrs. Clackett. “In my 21 years of working with community theater, this is the hardest script and the most challenging show that I have ever worked on.”
In addition to O’Brien, Fallon has assembled a talented team of local volunteers to present Noises Off! The cast also features Michael Lipp, Michael Yarick, Katie Johnston, William Collyer, Christopher Watson, Samantha Parsons, Bryan Martins and Anabella Didion. Gayle Featheringill is the costumer and the stage manager.
“It’s a treat to work with such a talented and gifted cast,” Fallon said. “The people performing are going to make this show magical.”
While not a traditional holiday show, Noises Off! is a perfect escape from holiday madness.
“Sometimes you go to the theater to have fun, and this show is all about having fun,” Fallon said. “The play’s action is like a locomotive that has gone off of its tracks.”
Performances are offered Dec. 7, 8, 13, 14, 15, 16, 20, 21, 22, and 23. General admission tickets are $28, @5 for seniors, students and military. Thursday night performances are Student Nights, where students can receive half price tickets with a valid student I.D.
For tickets, visit playersbythesea.org or call 904.249.0289.