The Noise (Newcastle)
An interesting concept lacks clear vision in this sci-conspiracy thriller at Northern Stage.
Billed as a sci-conspiracy thriller The Noise seems to have a lot going for it. Set on an island in Antarctica, where the Noise is a weird, ever-changing, constant sound affecting the islanders.
When a massive iceberg drifts into the harbour, scientist Harry (Jerry Killick) sees it as the opportunity to find out where the noise is coming from by listening to sound waves when the tide goes out (as the weight of the iceberg will be pressing down on the sea bed). But things take a sinister turn when a body is washed up. Is it suicide, murder or an accident? Do we care? Sadly not.
The Noise never delivers as a thriller - or anything else for that matter. It may be due to the fact that it is written by three people, Clare Duffy (associate director), Jon Spooner (director) and Chris Thorpe, and presented by a collaboration of Unlimited Theatre, Northern Stage and Warwick Arts Centre. Just too many people, with obviously different ideas involved, stopping a coherent, thought provoking play getting off the ground. There is a gem of an idea buried in this play, but it's not explored here.
Ultimately, there is a lack of any strong vision and no character is well-defined. You never connect or care about anyone involved. Initially Viktoria Kay (as Frances, Chief of Police) suggests her character may bring a bit light and shade to the production with a much needed comic touch, but that soon disappears.