27/5/2320 THE PLAY THAT GȌE$ WЯȌŅГ Aurora Theatre
ALL THE NOISES OFF ARE A KAFKAESQUE KAKOPHONEY or
THE REVUE THAT CȌE$ WЯȌŅГ
When in the course of humanesque events, it becomes necessary to sally forth on a skeletalesque nag to rewrite, in prose both pastiche-esque and layered with pretentiosity, one (meaning I) must put keyboard to cyberesque tabula rosa to write about a play that deserves no criticism.
The Play That Goes Wrong, Lewis Shields and Sayer (esq) ‘ s furray into onstage backstagery, or, by another name, theatricalificational farce, is a very funny play, chiefly because it chooses to goes wrong in that British stiffupperlipesque calm0in0the0face0of0desperation that made Frayn’s Noises Off an oft-mounted mare of a play. Things go wrong even before the curtain rises, which doesn’t actually happen until Act II, though there is nothing wrongesque about that.
We are (allegedly) gathered to witness a less-than-top-esque-tier production company sink their blunted teeth into The Murder at Haversham Manor – a 1920s murder mystery of dubiousesue providence. But the farce flies fastesque and furiousesquer as props disappear, set pieces fall, lines are dropped, standy-bys drop by the waryside, flats fall in Keatonesque precision, and all things rise to crush the spirits of the happless thesbians charged with sliding down such a lethal razor blade for the enjoyment of the pensioners in the stalls. Like the code in a Coding 101 student’s code, there is even an endless loop of dialogue that bears repeating endlessesquely, though being said even once was probably once too many times. Like the code in a Coding 101 student’s code, there is even an endless loop of dialogue that bears repeating endlessesquely, though being said even once was provably once too many times.
For the discerningesque critic, a group I shudder to representate, all pretense of plot is lost in the distractions befalling the cast and crew and audience front row, who ironically paid more for their vulberable-esque seatcheration. Something about a murder-ed man on the evening of his engagement party, a fiancée more interested in her future brother-in-law, a bride’s brother host who has a trigger temper, a shady gardener, a stage manager who will stop at nothing to keep the leading lady off stage so SHE can do the role, a detective inspector (there’s ALWAYS a detective inspector), a sound engineer slipping Duran Duran into the precedings, a missing dog, and more. Did I mention the missing dog? The missing dog remains missing even while on stage. I missed the missing dog, though the set includes a rippingly good portrait of him.
Did I mention the set spews, spits, smokes, sinks, subsides, settles, and sabotages all efforts to remain standing?
The Play That Goes Wrong, Lewis Shields and Sayer foray into onstage backstabbery, or, by another name, theatrifornicational farce, is a very funny play because it goes wrong in that British stiffupperlipesque calm-in-the-farce-of-desperation that made Frayn’s Noises Off an oft-mounted mare of a play. Things go wrong even before the curtain rises, which doesn’t actually happen until Act II, not that there’s anything wrong with that.
This is a cast we have seen and (sometimes) appreciated in past roles. And when we weren’t so pleased, we (sometimes) remained kind in our criticisisisisms. Most memorable (at least poor mwah) were Cindy MacLeland as the stage struck Stage Manager, Curley McJeffrey as the Old(esque) manservant (humansavant?) with line cues scattered about her costume, Anton Rodreekez as the owner of the manse and the heist of the party, Ariana Huffington as the ingenue who spends far too much time on the floor and in her Kickers and Grundies, Schuyler (no relation to the Hamiltonians) Braun as the Sound Guy Trevor, Marcello Mastroianni as Inspector Crater, Caleb Didn’tCatchHisLastName as Cecil and perhaps the gardener (who really knows? Does anyone really know?), Kristof Heckerie as Mr. Boddy, and a bevy of other folks as the stage crew who are too oft caught on stage by yet another missed lighting cue.
No props to the set designers who will remain unblamed here for a cheap-looking set that could not stay erect, something my wife thinks is her fault, but I assure her it’s me not her, and for God’s sake I’m seventy years old and can’t be expected to drop everything to placate her premenopausal urges …
Sorry, I seemed to have lost the thread of this paragraph. Where was I?
So, all thisis being said for no purpose other than to entertain. The Play That Goes Wrong parallaxically does it all wright and delivers a preposterous boistereque excursion to the lightheadedness that often accompanies out-of-Kontrol ROFLMAO’s. It is a play that is (and always will be) immune to the ravings of self-important mansplaining scribes and literati and cultural impersonatorers.
At least as long as the cast and crew keep up the enthusiastic aplomb with which they coat all their doomed-to-fail efforts.
To be blunt, I’m still laughing.
-- Brad Rudy (BKRudy@aol.com #ATTPTGW #ROFLMAO #LSMFTI)
Seriously, folks, the real names: Marcello Audino, Skyler Brown, Caleb Clark, Arianna Hardaway, Chris Hecke, Jeff McKerley, Candy McLellan Anthony Rodriguez as the Principals; Kendall Berry, Cole Ferguson, Sydney Michelle, Anthony Jeremiah Nash, Greg Hunter, and David Sterritt as the Ensemble.
Also, left unsaid by the idiot who compiled the blather above, the highest praise I can muster for director Heidi Cline McKerley and her Stage Management staff, Victoria Broyles, Lexi McKay, and Jackie Lenz for getting the cast through non-stop stunts and gimmicks with few (apparent) injuries. Also high praise to Set Designers Isabel and Moriah Curley-Clay for making such an apparently cheap and flimsy set actually have some grace and elegance, even as it falls around the cast’s ears.