NOISES OFF is the hilarious play within a play about a group of actors performing a touring edition of a British farce entitled NOTHING ON. The reader (and performers and audience members for that matter) are only allowed to see NOTHING ON from the first act. The first time they see it, it is the night of the dress rehearsal. The next time they see the act it is from behind the stage several weeks into the company's tour. The final act of the show is once again a performance of the first act of NOTHING ON, but seen from the front of the stage several weeks later. The hilarity involved ensues from the interactions of the performers and their relationships with each other. NOISES OFF displays that as funny as a play might be from the audience, sometimes it pares in comparison to the hilarity ensuing behind the scenes.
Called the funniest farce ever written, NOISES OFF returned to Broadway with a cast that included Patti LuPone and Peter Gallagher for the 2002 season and sent reviewers searching for new accolades to the hilarious. "The most dexterously realized comedy ever about putting on a comedy ... A spectacularly funny ... peerless backstage farce ... [This} dizzy, well-known romp ... [is a] festival of delirium." - N.Y. Times. "Bumper car brilliance ... If laughter is indeed the best medicine, NOISES OFF is worth its weight in Cipro." - N.Y. Daily News. "The funniest farce ever written ... Never before has side-splitting taken on a meaning dangerously close to the non-metaphorically medical." - N. Y. Post. "As side-splitting a farce as I have seen. Ever? Ever." - N.Y. Magazine.