Utah Shakespeare Festival’s “Noises Off”

Cedar City, UT

July 2011

Escaping the heat and heading up to cooler Utah for some great theater is a summer ritual for Las Vegans, and one I look forward to every year.

Celebrating its 50th Anniversary Season, the Utah Shakespeare Festival is offering a full menu of traditional Shakespeare and non-bard plays.

Last year, I attended The Merchant of Venice in the outdoor theater, which rekindled my fascination with Shakespeare.

This year, I chose a modern play, Noises Off.  Not being familiar with the concept or background of this play or playwriting/theatrical acting in general, I experienced it with naiveté and open anticipation.

Noises Off turned out to be a play about a play– a farce poking fun at the process of putting together a theatrical performance.  It showed how the personality flaws and human needs and interactions of the cast and crew can complicate this artistic endeavor, to uproarious results.

"Noises Off"
"Noises Off" at Utah Shakespeare Festival

Each actor embodied an archetype, such as a gossip, a vacant bimbo, a vocabulary-challenged himbo, an insecure overthinker, an alcoholic, a harried stage hand, a patient director, a overworked-but-naïve stage manager.  Each character played into and against each other’s drama in hilarious ways until the play became a riotous scene of chaos.

"Noises Off"
"Noises Off" at Utah Shakespeare Festival

The physical comedy employed by all was surprisingly intense and very effective.  The comedic timing was excellent.   The audience roared with laughter during all three scenes.

It was a delightful experience and one that many people will appreciate.  How lucky Las Vegans are to have a festival like this so close to us!

Rating: A+

Audience: All Ages.


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