Kade's Name Graphic Kade Mendelowitz
Lighting Designer
PO Box 81522
Fairbanks, AK ..... 99708

Noises Off

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" Set changes take the audience from the front of a complicated construction, then backstage, then up front again, imparting an appreciation of the technical side of drama."

Noises Off
November, 1993
Technical Director
Scenic and Lighting Design Advisor

'Noises Off' players pull it off

..... Theater UAF's production of "Noises Off" boasts a well-balanced cast performing excellent stunts in a wildly-entertaining adult comedy about backstage drama.

..... All nine University of Alaska Fairbanks cast members contribute talent equally, portraying a traveling English drama group. For the most part, clipped British accents are well-presented, although a few lines are not clear and dialogue is sometimes difficult to understand.

..... The production captures the twists of behind-the-scenes human drama and emotion. The motivations shared by the actors and actresses are jealousy, suspicion, and anger. Because of underlying adult themes and subtle lines with double meanings, the production is not appropriate for children.

..... Particularly amusing are the tricks and pranks that frequently test acting skills during a theater production. The story line follows the same play for a fairly serious final dress rehearsal, to an eye-opening backstage scenario a month later, to an actual performance fraught with blunders and mishaps.

..... Set changes take the audience from the front of a complicated construction, then backstage, then up front again, imparting an appreciation of the technical side of drama.

..... The production also includes several well-prepared stunts. Timothy Lampkin deserves, and Saturday night earned, a round of applause for hopping up a steep flight of stairs with his trousers bunched around his ankles, an athletic feat that requires extreme care.

..... Lampkin's character, that of actor Frederick Fellowes, who is playing the part of Phillip Brent in the English play "Nothing On," is a mild-mannered Englishman. He is susceptible to nosebleeds at the mere mention of violence, a trait not well-suited to his fellow actors and actresses.

..... In another hilarious stunt, UAF student Elizabeth Hillard, playing the sexpot actress Brooke Ashton, trips as she rushes on stage after losing one of her contact lenses backstage.

..... Hillard plays a simple-minded, sleazy actress who clings to her lines, even if they are inappropriate, when her fellow actors and actresses begin ad-libbing. Ashton earned a spot in the sex farce, playing opposite big-time English performers, by virtue of her liaison with the play's director, Lloyd Dallas.

..... David Fields is convincing as the cranky, sarcastic Dallas. The prolific director is portrayed as a man living what he is trying to direct, squirming to maintain an affair with Ashton as well as the assistant stage manager, Poppy-Norton-Taylor, played by Jessica Chisum.

..... Chisum hits her mark as a frantic young woman, trying to please her boss and lover, by making a go of one of the theater's best known traditions, that "the show must go on." Her zeal to share her play-shattering news with Dallas is hilarious-the entire cast stops mid-show when Norton-Taylor tells him she is pregnant.

..... Karl Kalan plays the alcoholic English actor, Selsdon Mowbray, stumbling and bumbling about. Jessica Willamson plays actress Belinda Blair, the one cast member who seems to stay on top of the production gossip.

..... Other UAF students who take the stage include Jeanne Dalzell, playing the famous English actress Dotty Otley; Michael Hopkins, as the nervous, jealous and somewhat empty- headed actor Garry Lejune; and Darrell Clark, playing the flustered stage manager Tim Allgood.

..... Theater UAF will take a Thanksgiving holiday break this weekend, and return to the Lee Salisbury Theater on campus Dec. 3-5 and 10-12. Evening performances are at 8:15p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, with 4p.m. matinees on Sundays.

..... Tickets are $12 for adults or $6 for students and are available from the theater box office, Carrs, Hoitt's or by credit card, at (800) GRT-SEAT.

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