Art, Movies, Lit, Theater

Epic Comedy To Start Things Off So Wrong

Posted by tbaker |

Special to TFW

TheatreSquared’s Season 7 launches with the epic-scale comedy Noises Off, Michael Frayn’s fast-moving backstage farce, next week in downtown Fayetteville. Critically acclaimed as a modern comic masterpiece,

Noises Off follows a troupe of actors scrambling to hold a show together amidst frayed nerves, romantic betrayals, and chaos on stage and off.

Following a preview performance tonight, Noises Off opens tomorrow, Aug. 31, and plays through Sunday in the Studio Theatre at Walton Arts Center’s Nadine Baum Studios.

“If ever a comedy earned the word ‘epic,’ this is it,” said T2 Artistic Director Robert Ford. “It’s a director’s worst nightmare: stuck halfway through the show at midnight before opening, with backstage romance creating on-stage tension and parts of the set literally falling off. When you’re not living it, it’s riotously funny. We’ve wanted to do this one for years – it’s smart, requires a virtuosic cast, and reaches a comedic high that you can only experience through live theatre.”

Noises Off stars a company of nine — six actors, two crew members and their long-suffering director — desperately trying to stage a farce called “Nothing On.” In the first act, the company struggles to complete a dress rehearsal as midnight passes. In the second, the audience is transported backstage as the set literally revolves, revealing a cast on the verge of disaster as trysts, betrayals and revenge plunge the production into chaos. The final act returns to the company at the final performance, revealing the fallout of backstage catastrophes as the beleaguered cast stumbles on. It was named by the Daily Telegraph as “the funniest comedy ever written.”

Opening Night performance includes a champagne toast at intermission and a post-show reception with the cast and creative team catered by BHK on the Square.

TheatreSquared will offer a free audience forum with the director and cast of Noises Off after the 2 p.m. performance on Sunday, Sept. 2 at 4 p.m. Ozarks at Large host Kyle Kellams will moderate the conversation for broadcast on KUAF 91.3 fm.

TheatreSquared is Northwest Arkansas’s regional theatre, dedicated to creating exceptional theatrical works and innovative educational outreach. The theatre is the recipient of the 2011 National Theatre Company Grant from the American Theatre Wing, founder of the Tony Awards, recognizing the nation’s ten most promising emerging professional theatres. For further information, contact TheatreSquared at 479.445.6333 or visit the Theatre’s website at theatre2.org.

Tickets start at $24 ($10/under 30) through the Walton Arts Center Box Office at (479) 443-5600 or at theatre2.org.

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