Watching one of his own farces from side of stage, playwright Michael Frayn is said to have thought it funnier from behind than in front. Inspired by this he wrote Noises Off, about an incompetent cast of failed actors who each try to overcome their flaws in order to stage a British sex farce called Nothing On.
Director Jonathan Biggins and STC tackle Frayn’s comedic masterpiece in February and Sydney audiences are sure to be gasping for air as this raucous storm unfolds from behind the scenes and with hilarious consequences.
Josh McConville plays Garry, the fairly well-known, stuttering male lead, whose romantic attachment to fellow actress Dotty (Genevieve Lemon) may just be his undoing. McConville’s a genuine lover of a good farce and Frayn’s British humour, “It’s my favourite play, I love comedy, I love Michael Frayn… the characters are flawed but they put forward a brave face,” he says.
Although the characters are essentially lousy actors McConville remarks, “You can’t think of these guys as bad, you’ve got to try to create two characters that are multi-layered.”
He also adds, “Juxtaposing the two characters, switching from one to the other; that is very funny, it’s where the comedy lies.” (ATS)
Feb 17-Apr 5, Sydney Theatre Company, The Wharf, Pier 4 Hickson Rd, Walsh Bay, $50-109, 9250 1777, sydneytheatre.com.au