‘Noises Off!’ ready to rock Downriver with laughter

Noises Off cast members

Photo by Sue Suchyta. Downriver Actors Guild “Noises Off” cast members Keri Geftos-Harris (left) of Riverview as Belinda Blair, Katie Suchyta of Dearborn as Dotty Otley, Kevin Kaminski of Detroit as Frederick Fellows, and Ashley Blevins of Allen Park as Poppy Norton-Taylor enjoy some post-rehearsal cast bonding. The comedy runs 7:30 p.m. July 31, Aug, 1, 7 and 8, and 3 p.m. Aug. 9 at the Catherine A. Daly Theatre on the Avenue, 2656 Biddle in Wyandotte. For tickets, call 313-303-5269 or go to downriveractorsguild.net.


Michael Frayn’s laughter-filled farce “Noises Off” runs 7:30 p.m. July 31, Aug. 1, 7 and 8, and 3 p.m. Aug. 9 at the Catherine A. Daly Theatre on the Avenue, 2656 Biddle in Wyandotte.

Tickets are $12 for adults, and $10 for students and seniors. To order, call 313-303-5269, or go to downriveractorsguild.net.

Director Lucinda Chavez said the show is challenging to direct because it is a complicated, fast-paced, physical farce that incorporates a play-within-a-play.

During the second act, the audience sees the play from behind the scenes, then returns to the stage set for the third act.

“The show itself is cleverly written and funny,” Chavez said. “My role as director is to take those lines and encourage a delivery and pace that brings out the humor in the best way possible.”

Chavez said the show is arguably the best farce ever written, and audiences are in for a unique and hilarious night of entertainment.

She said she is enjoying the journey as she prepares the cast for opening night.
“I learned a long time ago that it is useless to refrain from laughing when directing a comedy, especially a good farce,” Chavez said.

She said she feels fortunate to have assembled a seasoned cast who understand comedy.
“It is a joy to watch them as they develop their characters, try new gestures and experiment with the delivery of lines,” she said. “The cast is already bonding, and it shows onstage. I know the audience will feel that connection as well, and that always makes for a better show.”

The cast includes Ashley Blevins of Allen Park as Poppy Norton-Taylor; Katie Suchyta of Dearborn as Dotty Otley; Keri Geftos-Harris of Riverview as Belinda Blair; Southgate residents Trey Allen as Garry Lejeune, and Peyton Bias as Brook Ashton; Tony Primeau of Wyandotte as Tim Allgood; and Detroit residents Nick Szczerba as Lloyd Dallas, Kevin Kaminski as Frederick Fellows, and Jim Wolbrink as Selsdon Mowbray.

Primeau said his character is a sleep-deprived, anxiety-ridden stage manager with a ridiculous sense of urgency.

He said there are times during rehearsals when it is a challenge to stay in character.
“When someone ‘accidentally’ trips over me (onstage) when I am supposed to be asleep behind the couch, that makes me laugh,” Primeau said. “It’s an amazing cast, super-talented and hilarious.”

Wolbrink said his character is an elderly drunk who slurs his words, and fears neither authority nor repercussion. He said one of his acting challenges is keeping his play-within-the-play character distinct from his primary role.

Wolbrink strongly encourages people to see the show more than once.
“There will be things you missed (the first time) that will make the experience more enjoyable and funny,” Wolbrink said.


Shakespeare in Detroit presents “Macbeth” at 8 p.m. July 16 to 18 and 2 p.m. July 19 for four free outdoor performances at New Center Park in Detroit.

The cast includes Mile Boucher as Macbeth, Chris Jakob as Malcolm, Vanessa Sawson as the first witch and Macduff, Dominque Lowell as the second witch and Duncan, and Laura Heikkinen as the third witch and Lady Macbeth.

Also: Aja Dier as Lady Macduff and a gentlewoman, Casey Hibbert as Banquo and a doctor, Joe Sfair as Lennox, Dan Jaroslaw as Ross, Phil Rice as Angus, David Galido as Seyton and the first murderer, and Adrian Diffey as the porter and the second murderer.

For more information, go to shakespeareindetroit.com.


Olympia Entertainment begins performances of Mitch Albom’s “Ernie” July 9 at the City Theatre, 2301 Woodward in Detroit.

Tickets are $20 and $25, with group discounts for parties of eight or more.

Performances are at 8 p.m. July 9 to 11, 16 to 18, 23 to 25, July 30, 31, and Aug. 1; at 2 p.m. July 11, 18, 25, and Aug. 1; at 3 p.m. July 12 and 19; and at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. July 26 and Aug. 2.

To order tickets, call 800-745-3000 or go to Ticketmaster.com or OlympiaEntertainment.com.