Your voice for the festival

Noises Off is a place for you to write reviews, share your thoughts, make some jokes and join in the discussion. You can submit articles by email to noff@nsdf.org.uk, or – even better – come and visit the office behind the main stairs in the Spa Complex at any time of the day and discuss ideas with the team. Follow and tweet us @noffmag.

Review: Lust for life

25 March 2016

by Joseph Winer

I had been looking forward to Cock ever since the festival productions were announced. Encouraged to read something by Mike Bartlett, I was drawn to it at Foyles bookshop in London about six months ago and got to reading straight away. In a way, the play is hardly original by using exploration of sexuality as a key theme. However, I believe Bartlett gives one of the most honest depictions of the confusions of sexuality ever seen on stage. 

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Review: Gruesome fantasies

25 March 2016

by Eoin Buckley

Have you ever been told a story that has a really good moral and intention behind it, but the way the story was told to you just didn't hook you in the slightest? The kind of story that opens up very interesting questions and conversations, but only once you've slogged through the stodge to get there. That's how I felt after watching Dahmer.

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Review: All aboard

24 March 2016

by Tom Bulpett

I adored this show...perhaps I should elaborate on that opinion to hit my word limit, but I honestly don’t feel I will be able to express how much I loved this musical in a few hundred words, so I might as well be brief.

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Review: An uncomfortable feeling

24 March 2016

by Aenne Pallasca

apocalyptic-genderpunk

"Honestly, people treat bisexuality like Schrödinger's Cat: we're both gay and straight until they see us dating, and then we become one or the other."

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Review: Fun is a serious business

24 March 2016

by Steph Young

When I read about The Toyland Murders in the NSDF programme, my heart did a tiny little jump for joy. Over the past few years, I have developed a fondness for puppet theatre, so my hopes for Nottingham New Theatre’s pint-sized, film noir style offering were high.

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Review: One hell of a cast

24 March 2016

by Tom Bulpett

So far my festival has been occupied by police brutality, sexual identity crisis and child abuse. All of which I very much enjoyed, but these productions (I hope it was clear I was talking about shows there) were not exactly easy to watch at times. I was therefore thoroughly looking forward to switching my brain off, sitting back and enjoying some light-hearted uncomplicated theatre. And after whetting my appetite with an impressive rendition of their opening number at the welcoming ceremony, I hoped the production of The Addams Family from Durham Light Opera Group could provide me with this.

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Review: Sombre zest

24 March 2016

by Joseph Winer

The Durham Light Opera Group described their production of The Addams Family as "a wacky musical comedy… [with] plenty of dark humour". I am pleased to say that they didn’t disappoint. The musical presents the characters we all know and… love (!?), and tells the story of Wednesday Addams (Jennifer Bullock) falling in love with a normal boy, Lucas (Joe McWilliam). With the parents of these two lovebirds set to meet for dinner, hilarity and disaster will surely result.

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Review: Great things to come

23 March 2016

by Tom Bulpett

I had no idea what I was in for before I saw Daniel, the debut piece of new writing from Footprint Theatre. After speaking to several people before seeing the show it was clear that it had divided opinion: some hated it, others were unsure, while many loved it. Regardless of views, there was one reoccurring trend among those I spoke to: they could not stop talking about it. And after experiencing it I can see why.

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Review: Ghoulish glee

23 March 2016

by Alice Saville

The Addams Family are one big contradiction. They're a loving, sharing, giving family, who also make regular attempts to murder anything or anyone that crosses their path. This musical ramps up the irony at the family's heart by making romance the show's lifeblood.  

 

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Review: Kicking against the pricks

23 March 2016

by Olivia Haw

There is nothing quite like hearing that one of your less popular opinions is now held by someone else as well. This is made all the more satisfying given that the opinion in question is regarding that little chestnut, the highly divisive Cock that everyone seems so desperate to crack.

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Review: Over where?

22 March 2016

by Richard Dennis

The fall of the Berlin Wall infamously caused historian Francis Fukuyama to suggest that it marked “the end of history”. Given world events since, it's easy to scoff at the idea. But at the time, it would've been easier to see where Fukuyama was coming from.

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Review: The outsiders

22 March 2016

by Kate Wyver

I try to imagine being told that someone I know is a paedophile. I try to imagine whether I’d be able to stop thinking about it, whether I wouldn’t want to talk about it, or whether I’d be the one carefully probing for gossip.

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Review: In safe hands

22 March 2016

by Steph Young

Footprint Theatre’s Daniel is a thought-provoking, if brief, verbatim and devised piece which asks its audience to scrutinise their beliefs and emotional responses to the troubling stories with which we are presented in daily life. I was happy to comply. Even 24 hours after seeing Daniel, I am still unsure as to where I stand on the sentence of the 18-year-old convicted for possessing indecent images of children.

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Review: A new killer in a new town

21 March 2016

by Joseph Winer

I just love puppets. I think it’s fascinating how glued-together pieces of felt can be brought to life to the point where I actually feel for them. There was a brilliant moment when Harvey B. Feltz (James Roscow) entered with his hands tied together, and I felt genuinely upset. A build-up of life through these inanimate creatures led me to this point, in a show that was superb in writing, direction and execution of performances.

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Review: Scary monsters? Super creeps?

21 March 2016

by Meg Osborne

Footprint Theatre’s production of Daniel is a bold new play with a dark theme. The four actors bravely and deftly tackled the issue of whether it's sexual preferences, or merely thoughts, that define who we are as human beings.

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Review: A little stiffy

20 March 2016

by Tom Bulpett

Cock. It’s certainly a hard play to get right. Full to the brim with salty wit. And a climax that can get really messy.

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Review: Sometimes theatre makes me feel stupid

20 March 2016

by Joseph Winer

Sometimes I sit in complete darkness and watch a plot unravel in front of me on a topic I know nothing about. Then there’s an interval, and I’m suddenly thrown into the deep end of discussions about the vital political and social context of something I am none-the-wiser to. 

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Review: Mind the gaps

by Kate Wyver

I love the idea of seeing the awkwardness of daily interactions with strangers. In Departures I loved the ticket office attendant’s final rant about everything that is shit about life. I loved that the man in the suit wanted to learn to play the oboe. I loved that the first five minutes are wonderfully subtle with the nuances of everyday embarrassments, encounters and tiny gestures.

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Review: What a song and dance

by Jaz Manville

I wasn't expecting to like Departures. The synopsis put me in mind of long afternoons of endless drama improvisations and I'd heard rumours that it was almost entirely sung through, neither of which thrilled me. 

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