Following its acclaimed run at London’s Old Vic and then at the Novello Theatre in the West End, Noises Off opens its UK tour at the Theatre Royal Bath from Wednesday 27 March to Saturday 6 April. Directed by Lindsay Posner, the UK tour stars Neil Pearson, Maureen Beattie, Geoffrey Freshwater, Chris Larkin, David Bark-Jones, Simon Bubb, Danielle Flett, Thomasin Rand and Sasha Waddell.
Michael Frayn’s multi award-winning backstage comedy is widely regarded as one of greatest British comedies ever written. Winner of both Olivier and Evening Standard Awards for Best Comedy, Noises Off serves up a riotous double bill – a play within a play.
Hurtling along at breakneck speed Noises Off follows the backstage antics of a touring theatre company as they stumble their way through rehearsals for ‘Nothing On’ in Weston-super-Mare to a shambolic first night and a final disastrous performance in Stockton-on-Tees. As offstage shenanigans and onstage bedlam have a negative impact on personal relationships within the cast, the actors’ desperate attempts to cover up a series of mishaps only serve to compound their problems with hilarious results.
Neil Pearson plays the director of ‘Nothing On’, Lloyd Dallas. Neil is well known for his roles in the television series Drop the Dead Donkey, Between the Lines and Monroe, as well as the films Bridget Jones’ Diary and Bridget Jones’ Diary: Edge of Reason. Earlier this year, he played a guest role in BBC1’s Death in Paradise. His stage credits include Arcadia in the West End; Kevin Spacey’s production of Cloaca at The Old Vic; Mind Milly for Me; and Sir Peter Hall’s touring productions of Old Times and Uncle Vanya, which played Bath in 2007 and 2008 respectively.
Maureen Beattie plays Dotty Otley who plays Mrs Clackett, the Brent’s housekeeper. Maureen’s screen credits include Lewis, Vera, Taggart, Casualty and Channel 4’s Twelfth Night. She has performed extensively with the Royal Shakespeare Company and recently appeared in Enquirer at The National Theatre of Scotland and in No Quarter at the Royal Court. She last played the Theatre Royal Bath in 2005 in Rebecca.
Geoffrey Freshwater plays Selsdon Mowbray who plays the Burglar. Geoffrey’s many television credits include Foyle’s War, Law & Order, Channel 4’s drama The Government Inspector and he recently appeared in the film Invisible Women directed by Ralph Fiennes. His extensive theatre work includes Old Money at Hampstead Theatre, Filumena at the Almeida and several productions with the RSC. He last played Bath in The Tempest alongside Tim Pigott-Smith as part of the Theatre Royal’s 2012 Summer Season.
Chris Larkin plays Frederick Fellowes who plays Phillip Brent and Sheikh. Chris last performed at the Theatre Royal Bath in 2011 in Yes, Prime Minister, when he appeared as Bernard Woolley, a role he now plays in the new television revival. His many television and film credits include Doctors, Holby City, Doctor Who, Marple, Master and Commander and Valkyrie. His stage work ranges from His Dark Materials at the National Theatre to When We Are Married and The Lady from Debuque in the West End.
Thomasin Rand plays the part of Brooke Ashton who plays the part of Vicki. Her recent television credits include, The Bletchley Circle and Midsomer Murders for ITV, and BBC’s dramas Call the Midwife and Sherlock: Scandal in Belgravia. Her theatre credits include The Country Girl in the West End, which played Bath in 2010, and Love’s Labour’s Lost at Shakespeare’s Globe. Sasha Waddell plays Belinda Blair who plays Flavia Brent. On screen Sacha played the role of Lady Glorvina in the BBC drama Parade’s End, she has also recently appeared in Midsomer Murders, A Touch of Cloth and Holby City. Her theatre credits include The Mousetrap in the West End.
Simon Bubb plays Tim Allgood, the Stage Manager. Simon was in the original London cast of War Horse and his productions at the National Theatre also include St Joan, The Habit of Art and King James Bible. Danielle Flett plays Assistant Stage Manager, Poppy Norton-Taylor. Danielle recently performed in the Royal Court production of Vera Vera Vera.
David Bark-Jones plays Garry Lejeune who plays Roger Tramplemain. David has worked extensively on screen, his film credits include Guy Richie’s RocknRolla and The Da Vinci Code, and on television he has appeared in BBC’s Pride and Prejudice, New Tricks, Young James Herriott and in Channel 4’s drama The Pillars of the Earth. On stage he played Richard Hannay in The 39 Steps at the Criterion Theatre, receiving the 2010 BroadwayWorld.com award for Best West End Leading Actor. His other recent theatre credits include The Forest at the National Theatre and Dealer’s Choice at the National Theatre and Vaudeville Theatre.
Michael Frayn has written sixteen plays, including Copenhagen, Afterlife, Benefactors, Donkeys’ Years, and Democracy. He has also translated for the theatre, mostly Chekhov, and adapted Chekhov’s first, untitled play as Wild Honey. He has written a number of screenplays, including Clockwise, starring John Cleese. His eleven novels include The Tin Men, Towards the End of the Morning, Headlong, Spies, and most recently Skios. He has also published collections of articles, including Travels with a Typewriter; two works of philosophy; and a memoir, My Father’s Fortune.
Lindsay Posner was Associate Director at the Royal Court Theatre from 1987 to 1992 where his production of Death and The Maiden won two Olivier Awards. His many West End theatre credits include Butley starring Dominic West; An Ideal Husband starring Samantha Bond and Rachel Stirling; Fool For Love starring Juliette Lewis; Arthur Miller’s A View From The Bridge starring Ken Stott (nominated for four Olivier Awards); Carousel; Fiddler on The Roof; and the world premiere of Power by Nick Dear and Tartuffe at the National Theatre. He has also directed many productions at the Royal Shakespeare Company. Recently his West End production of Uncle Vanya, starred Ken Stott, Anna Friel and Samuel West; and his production of Terence Rattigan’s The Winslow Boy is currently at London’s Old Vic. His productions of Abigail’s Party and Relatively Speaking both visit Bath in April; the latter, prior to West End. This August, he will co-direct Feydeau’s A Little Hotel on the Side with Cal McCrystal for the Theatre Royal Bath’s 2013 Summer Season.
Noises Off became the first London Old Vic Theatre Company production to transfer into the West End, with performances at the Novello Theatre, and is now also the first to embark on a major UK tour. Noises Off is produced on tour by The Old Vic Theatre Company and Old Vic Productions.
NOISES OFF appears at the Theatre Royal Bath from Wednesday 27 March to Saturday 6 April. Tickets are available from the Theatre Royal Bath Box Office on 01225 448844 or online at www.theatreroyal.org.uk