This year’s fall play, Noises Off! includes an innovative rotating stage, hilarious characters and wild physical comedy. This farce follows actors as they travel together from stage-to-stage. The play focuses on the performance of an act of a show and things begin to go very poorly. Characters begin to mature and disagreements break out within the cast. While this may sound dramatic, the show is actually extremely funny.
Thomas Sollers, the play’s director, says the play was chosen because of its reputation as a fantastic comedic work.
“Universally speaking, this play is acknowledged as one of the funniest plays ever written,” Sollers says.
The Theatre Dept. has wanted to perform the award-winning show for a while but has just recently received the rights to produce it this year.
“It’s a play full of jokes; it’s a play that’s funny because of the circumstances that they’re in, that’s the best kind of comedy,” Sollers says. He also attributes much of the show’s comedic value to the use of props and physical acting.
The show is complex in the sense that there is another show within it, meaning that some of the actors will play multiple roles. In fact, six students play more than one character in the show.
When it came time to pick the student actors themselves, according to Sollers it was really about making sure they all meshed well together.
The set is another aspect of this play that really brings it to life. The rotating stages allows the audience to simultaneously see multiple locations and scenes from the play. “The set has a lot of fine detail that can really only be added once we get the initial structure together,” senior crew member Leo Loubieres says.
Even though the play is in the fairly small Upstairs Theatre, the crew was still able to manage the complex set, the likes of which hasn’t been seen in ETHS theatre since Little Shop of Horrors was performed in 2012.
Although this rotating set seems like a tall task to tackle, students note that it really isn’t too different from putting together any other set. “It just makes it much more unique as it’s not something that we do a lot, but our building process isn’t really changed that much,” Loubieres says.
The show, in terms of technical direction, is highly advanced. “From an actor’s perspective, this is probably the hardest show that I will ever do in my high school career,” junior Olivia Nicholson says.“That’s mainly because of the stage direction. It also has a lot of physical comedy and props,” Nicholson says.
With an abundance of props, physical comedy and overall challenge for actors, the show is a unique contrast in comparison to previous ETHS plays. Actors and audience members alike are sure to see the complexity and hilarity of the show in all its glory when the cast takes the stage.
The show will run from Dec. 14 to the 16 in the Upstairs Theatre. Tickets cost $6 for students and $8 for adults.