The production runs from 13 December 2011 to 25 February 2012 (previews from 3 December), marking the popular play’s first major London revival since Jeremy Sams’ 2000 production at the National Theatre, which subsequently transferred to the West End and Broadway.
Noises Off - a play within a play - follows the amateur touring production of a dreadful sex comedy Nothing On, as it travels around the country. From the disastrous dress rehearsal with the cast still fumbling with entrances and exits and bothersome props, to the final performance of missed cues and forgotten lines, it portrays the explosive personal relationships that have led to off-stage shenanigans and on-stage bedlam.
The play premiered at the Lyric Hammersmith in 1982, directed by Michael Blakemore and starring Patricia Routledge, Paul Eddington, and Nicky Henson. Shortly after it transferred to the West End's Savoy Theatre, where it ran until 1987 with five successive casts. It won the Evening Standard Award for Best Comedy and the Olivier Award for Comedy of the Year.
Michael Frayn’s other work for the stage includes The Two of Us, Alphabetical Order, Donkeys’ Years, Clouds, Balmoral, Make or Break, Benefactors, Look Look, Here, Copenhagen, Democracy and Afterlife. He has also published ten novels, including the Booker Prize-nominated Spies and Headlong.
Lindsay Posner was associate director at the Royal Court Theatre from 1987 to 1992 where his production of Death and The Maiden won two Laurence Olivier Awards. His other recent theatre credits include Butley (Duchess Theatre), An Ideal Husband (Vaudeville), House of Games (Almeida), Fool For Love (Apollo Theatre) and A View From The Bridge (Duke of York’s, nominated for four Olivier Awards).
Currently at the Old Vic, Richard III starring artistic director Kevin Spacey finishes this Sunday (11 September 2011). It's followed by John Crowley's revival of JM Synge's The Playboy of the Western World starring Niamh Cusack, Ruth Negga and Robert Sheehan, which opens on 27 September 2011 (previews from 17 September).