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‘Noises Off’ at Actors’ Playhouse a farce of comedy gold

MiamiHerald / When it comes to farces, Michael Frayn’s “Noises Off” is one of the great ones. The 1982 comedy has made it to Broadway three times, and American audiences all over the country have embraced it in countless regional productions.

Actors’ Playhouse is having a go at “Noises Off” as the second show of its 30th anniversary season. The play fits like a period glove on the main stage at the Miracle Theatre, and farce is one of the strongest theatrical styles in artistic director David Arisco’s wheelhouse.

The first act is heavy on exposition and thus merely sporadically funny as the characters get introduced and relationships are outlined. But the second and third acts, here combined into one long second act, are comedy gold.

“Noises Off” is a steeped-in-theater show that will land most strongly with theater-savvy audience members. Frayn serves up a touring company presenting a sex farce titled “Nothing On,” and each act contains a version of the first scene from the fictional farce. “Version” is correct: When it comes to “Nothing On,” nothing ever seems to go right.

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