Monday, January 14, 2013


The acting profession demands discipline and precision, dedication and talent.  A level of spirit, as in" the show must go on," is expected.  What happens when the cast of a show, a British comedy called "Nothing On," allows their personal intrigues to interfere and sabotage their production both in front of and behind the curtain?

What results is Michael Frayn's funny farce "Noises Off!" being humorously created by Connecticut Cabaret Theatre in Berlin weekends until Saturday, February 9.

A dress or technical rehearsal is supposed to be the last minute opportunity to polish and perfect a performance before it opens to a first night audience.  Staging is fine tuned, lines are delivered flawlessly, costumes and props are put in place and the director makes sure no last minute problems exist.

Imagine the nightmare that Lloyd, a stalwart Len Fredericks, as the director experiences  when plates of sardines go missing, doors either won't close or open, the actor (Tom Roohr) playing the bungling burglar is off getting drunk and half the cast is having an affair with the other half.  There's more intrigue going on behind the curtains than in front of it.

Look out for bottles of brandy, bedsheets, bouquets of flowers, boxes, baggage, a baby, bathmats, battleaxes and blood not to mention sheiks, sardines, sex maniacs and slamming doors.  Silliness is clearly on parade, in one door and out the other, from the first moment Dotty, a dizzy and determined Joanne Callahan-Roohr, answers the phone.  The cast that also includes Jennifer Augert, Meagan Bomar, Chris Brooks, Barbara Horan, George Lombardo and James J. Moron is off and running, literally and figuratively.  Kris McMurray, with the assistance of Len Fredericks, directs this barrel of fun that quickly rolls out of control.

For tickets ($30), call the CT Cabaret Theatre, 31-33 Webster Square Road, Berlin at 860-829-1248 or online at  Shows are Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m., with doors opening at 7:15 p.m.  Remember to bring goodies to share at your table or plan to purchase desserts and drinks at the concession stand.  Now is also the time to sign up for acting classes at the new studio next door.

You may never look at sardines quite the same way ever again after they go flying on stage during the hilarious havoc of "Noises Off!" where a sneak peek behind the curtain may prove hazardous to your health.

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