"It turned suddenly serious halfway through Act Three," says Frayn. "But it was obvious that the audience wouldn't tolerate existential angst at that point in the evening." It meant the writer continued to add rewrites each day until the cast told him they would no longer learn any more new lines.
"Each time we rehearsed a new cast during the run at the Savoy, though, I did some more work on it, and again when it opened in Washington and when it transferred to Broadway," added Frayn.
There have been reports that some members of the theatrical profession are less than amused by Noises Off's depiction of actors as dim-witted, emotionally immature and inclined to alcoholic excess, to which Frayn admits the play is a "very unfair picture of actors."
"Noises Off is a farce and the characterisation in a farce has to be a bit two-dimensional," says Frayn. "Anyway it's not completely unknown for actors to have affairs and rows with one another."
The farce in Birmingham stars Neil Pearson, who is best known for his roles in Drop the Dead Donkey, Between the Lines and film Bridget Jones' Diary,
The play is 2hrs 20 minutes long.
New Alexandra Theatre
June 24 to June 29, 2013
Tickets cost £10 - £29.50 from the box office on 0844 871 3011 or book online at www.atgtickets.com/birmingham