Michael Frayn gained the idea of writing Noises Off from his experience of producing “the two of us” written for Lynn Redgrave in 1970.He thought it was funnier from behind than from the main house.

The play premièred at the Lyric Theatre, Hammersmith, London in 1982, directed by Michael Blakemore and starring Patricia Routledge, Paul Eddington, and Nicky Henson

It opened to excellent reviews and shortly after transferred to the Savoy Theatre in the West End, where it ran until 1987 with five successive casts. It won the Evening Standard Award for Best Comedy.

In 1983 the play opened on Broadway where it ran for 553 performances, and won an Outstanding Ensemble award.

The following were the outstanding Actors of Noises Off ) –on this Tuesday 16th January (Evening performance)

Liza Goddard plays Dotty Otley A middle-aged television star who is not only the top-billed star but also one of the play's principal investors- Paul Bradley plays Selsdon Mowbray An elderly, half-deaf "pro" with a long, storied career and a drinking problem; Simon Shepherd plays Lloyd Dallas the director of the play; Dan Fredenburgh plays Garry Lejeune the play's leading man, a solid actor who is completely An of finishing a sentence unless it is dialogue. Lisa Ambalavanar plays Brooke Ashton- A young, inexperienced actress from London. Simon Coates plays Frederick Fellowes who has a serious fear of violence and blood, both of which give him nosebleeds. Lucy Robinson plays Belinda Blair Cheerful and sensible, a reliable actress and the company's de facto peacemaker Nikhita Leasler plays Poppy Norton-Taylor Assistant Stage Who and understudy; Daniel Rainford plays Tim Allgood The over-worked and easily flustered Stage Manager,

The play was in three acts the wonderful reception room facing the audience in act one as Dolly answers the phone, a plate full of Sardines plays a varied part in the proceedings. This is in fact a technical rehearsal at the Theatre in Weston-super Mare It is midnight, the night before the first performance and the cast are hopelessly unready. Baffled by entrances and exits, missed cues, missed lines, and bothersome props, including several plates of sardines, they drive Lloyd, their director, into a seething rage several times during the run.

Act Two shows a Wednesday matinée performance one month later, at the Theatre Royal in Ashton-under-Lyne. In this act, the play is seen from backstage, providing a view that emphasises the deteriorating relationships between the cast. Romantic rivalries, lovers' tiffs and personal quarrels lead to offstage shenanigans, onstage bedlam and the occasional attack with a fire axe.

Act Three depicts a performance near the end of the ten-week run, at the (fictional) Municipal Theatre in Stockton-on-Tees. Relationships between the cast have soured considerably, the set is breaking down and props are winding up in the wrong hands, on the floor, and in the way. The actors remain determined at all costs to cover up the mounting chaos, but it is not long before the plot has to be abandoned entirely and the more coherent characters are obliged to take a lead in ad-libbing towards some sort of end.

Much of the comedy emerges from the subtle variations in each version as character flaws play off each other off-stage to undermine on-stage performance, with a great deal of slapstick. The contrast between players' on-stage and off-stage personalities is also a source of comic dissonance.

The whole cast was excellent, a massive team effort much applauded by the large audience.