The Theatre: Who, What, When, Where, How

Long lacking has been a concise, up-to-date, inexpensive encyclopedia of the theatre. The Theatre Handbook and Digest of Plays (Crown, $3), out last week, adequately fills the need. It is marred by too much sloppy writing and too many canned opinions; but inside its 900 pages Editor Bernard Sobel—a veteran of Broadway—has crammed a vast amount of useful information about the theatre's thousands of years.

Besides summarizing hundreds of plays and spotting hundreds of players and playwrights, the book touches such stray topics as theatrical cemeteries, the 36 Dramatic Situations, explains a mass of...

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