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Sonoma County Gazette
Noises Off at Curtain Call, Monte Rio

REVIEW - “Noises Off” at Curtain Call Theater - Monte Rio

Jun 11, 2017


By Christopher Patrick Murphy Berkheimer

All lovers of the stage should reserve tickets now to ensure they are not left out of this extraordinary happening.

The frenetic pace of this farce does not distract from how funny it is. The faultless timing of the 9 actors in this ensemble work speaks not only of their undeniable talent but of Director Avi Lind's skill in bringing it all together. This performance by Curtain Call's theatrical company, run by West County's dynamic duo of production, MichaelTabib andDennis O'Shea, should not be missed.

Lisa Posternacke and James RowanA play within a play, it seems actors emerge from the audience, often at the run, and disappear back into the audience. This inspired Tony award-winning comedy by British playwrightMichael Frayn is one of the reasons we all live in this paradise. Pratfalls including players losing their footing, dropping items, a young lady in a red dress, players losing (most) if their clothes, especially the lady in red, a reversible stage, many sardines, bloody noses, lots o' whiskey, cross-dressing and disappearing people and things are just some of the gags this performance provides. The multiple stage doors gives the ensemble full license to show creativity, talent and belies the old adage that the "fourth wall" is sacrosanct.

The reversible stage, co-created by Jake Hamlin andPamela Henderson is put together as if we were only meters off Broadway, rather than 3,000 miles away. Monte Rio theatre is small, but the house is seemingly three times its size because of the many exits and entrances. The play is as big as Monte Rio is small.

First rate lighting and props, integral to the action are uncomplicated. Household items produce laughter as the cast uses them to keep the audience in stitches. As usual, Monte Rio Theatre stage management was a professional as it gets.

Various relationships (clandestine, familial, married and old friendships) are the sinew that keeps this 3 act play entertaining from beginning to end. The laughter starts in the opening scene and does not stop until the curtain falls.

Jake Hamlin and Katy CodySonoma County residents and our welcome tourists should not miss this masterpiece. The ticket prices are reasonable ($20/adults; $15/seniors) at this not-for-profit theater.Additionally, Friday, June 9, is the second 'pay what you can' night. I would rate the play PG, but well-behaved children will find plenty to laugh at and, it may elicit those Questions we parents "love" to answer. Bring your friends, family, people you want to get to know and, of course, yourself.

The show runs through June 24(see below), Fridays and Saturdays at 8 pm and 3 pm matinees on Sunday. Curtain Call Theatre (aka Russian River Hall) is easily located at20347 Hwy 116, Monte Rio, directly across from Fern's pizza.


Hilarity and chaos ensue in Curtain Call Theatre’s production of Michael Frayn’s ingenious play-within-a-playNoises Off, about a third-rate British acting troupe desperately trying to stage and tour a third-rate farce calledNothing On.

Noises Off is a hysterical story about a theater troupe’s misadventures. As actors in this play-within-a-play rehearse, forgotten lines, dropped trousers and lost plates of sardines create onstage pandemonium. Meanwhile, it is total chaos backstage as love triangles, petty bickering and ruined affairs lead to pratfalls, flying props and more than one bloody nose. In the end, at the frenetic final performance, everything merges into one perfectly ravaged and wholly uproarious theatrical nervous breakdown.

Noises Off premiered in London in 1982 and won the London Evening Standard Award for Best Comedy. It opened on Broadway in 1983 and was nominated for four Tony Awards including the 1984 Award for Best Play. In 1992, Marty Kaplan wrote a screenplay for Noises Off and turned it into a successful film directed by Peter Bogdanovich. The play was revived on Broadway in 2001 and was nominated for the 2002 Tony for Best Revival of a Play.

Directed by: Avi Lind

Producer, Artistic Director: Michael Tabib

Stage Manager: Pamela Henderson

Set Design: Jake Hamlin

Lights & Sound: Chris Reid

Dotty / Mrs. Clackett: Michele Randall

Poppy: Lisa Posternack

Brooke / Vicki: Katie Cady

Belinda / Flavia: Nadja Masura

Lloyd: Joseph Potter

Garry / Roger: Jake Hamlin

Frederick / Philip / Sheikh: Peter Rogers

Selsdon / Burglar: Marc Hirschman

Tim: James Rowan

Curtain Call Theatre   ·   20347 Hwy. 116   ·   Monte Rio, CA 95462

Show Dates & Times:

Friday & Saturday 8pm: June 2*, 3, 9*, 10, June 16, 17, 23 (Doors open at 7:30)

Sunday 3pm: June 4, 11, 18 (Doors open at 2:30)

Champagne Buffet Gala: Saturday June, 24 at 8pm Performance, 7pm Doors Open

All performances, $20. Seniors and Students with ID $15. 

Champagne Buffet Gala, fundraising event $50 donation. Enjoy performance inspired food, Korbel champagne & wine and scrumptious desserts at intermission. “An experience not to be missed.”as overheard by most attendees.

Call for reservation (707) 524-8739  Follow us on Facebook: Russian River Hall


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