2001: Noises Off

Theater in the Mountains

Dotty the maid.

The craziest and most physical role I ever had. British farce at its best, this show-within-a-show
follows the usual hapless theater troupe and their misadventures in trying to produce a play. It is unique in many ways, not the least of which is the reversible two-story set, which must be turned completely around TWICE during the show. This feature discourages most local theaters from even attempting the show. It's also a challenge for the actors to learn because the three acts are essentially the same lines but with a number of subtle and not-so-subtle changes.

The first act portrays the group in rehearsal, with the beleaguered director vainly trying to coax out satisfactory performances. In the second act, the set is turned around and the audience sees what's really going on backstage, which is essentially all-out war among the performers. In the third act, the set is back to normal once again but literally everything goes wrong during the scene. I never had so much fun, or so many bruises.