The Theater: Old Play in Manhattan, Feb. 18, 1946

Lute Song (adapted from the Chinese Pi-Pa-Chi by Will Irwin & the late Sidney Howard; music by Raymond Scott; produced by Michael Myerberg) is the season's loveliest production and most charming failure. A retelling, with music, dances and pageantry, of a 500-year-old Chinese classic, it never quite catches the inner glow of art or the outward stir of theater. There should have been either less spectacle or less story. As it is, the old tale is retold at considerable length, but loses much of its flow and human feeling through gorgeous interruptions and sumptuous distractions. What's more, neither the writing nor...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!