JCCC Theatre Department Presents “Noises Off”

Photo courtesy of Midwest Trust Center

The Midwest Trust Center, MTC, at JCCC, is home to the Theatre Department which put on plays each school year. The JCCC Theatre Department is currently putting on the show Noises Off, a play that represents students, faculty, and staff to showcase their talents through acting.

 The cast of Noises Off stars rehearsed a farce show called “Nothing On.” The play is best known for being a “farce within a farce.” Playwright Michael Frayn captured the behind-house antics successfully and let the audience know that the notion for it to be “the play must go on no matter what.”

Having a play within a play can be shown as a “natural expression,” but for Noises Off, it is best known for the character have their own way to try and save a sinking show by leading it to chaos.  

“It’s about a second rate theatre company’s attempt to mount and tour a dinner theatre style show and how they fail,” said Noises Off director Scott Stackhouse, Artistic Coordinator Department of Music, Theatre & Recording Arts. 

The show represents the three stages of what it is like to be an actor and being able to be in a play. The dress rehearsal, opening performance, and penultimate performance drive the show towards the end where it has an unbearable run.

“Any of the faculty or students are happy to answer questions,” said Scott Stackhouse, acting professor and director of the show. “If they reach out to the faculty, they can take classes, work on productions and help out in the shops or backstage.”

Noises Off is shown to be funny and lets the audience know that it is ok to laugh throughout the show at parts that the actors make it to a point where it is funny. Finding ways for the cast to show the audience that they can laugh at points where it is necessary.

 The show follows the critical elements of Greece and Rome with its farce traces in critical elements. Considered, Atellan Farce is known to be subversive through the ruling of the elite in Rome which was banned.

 With the show going into its second and final weekend, “It’s extremely funny and a great example of farce, which is a style not seen so much these days in theatre,” said Stackhouse.  

Frayn was making political statements while writing Noises Off. While taking place during the Margret Thatcher’s era, it can be shown that political control over Britain is an aspect of trickle-down economics. 

In the 1600s, the farce can be enriched in a way that the Italian Commedia dell’arte troupes are known for stock characters being popularized stereotypically. The actors take the chance in the show to be acting in a play that is within the play itself.

The cast in “Nothing On” could never produce trickle-down economics that would be a win/win for the lower class.

Noises Off is no longer being shown but was played the weekend of April 21-23 and the 28-30th. To learn more about the 2023-24 Season, or follow the JCCC Theatre Instagram and Facebook accounts. 

Emily Baker, student reporter

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