Theater: Air-Conditioned Blightmare

America Hurrah, by Jean-Claude van Itallie, is a three-playlet wedding between pop art and the theater of cruelty. It is an off-Broadway trip through an air-conditioned blightmare towards an icy emptiness at the core of American life, the land of the Deepfreeze and the home of the rave, of the neon smile and the plastic heart.

The first playlet pits four masked interviewers against four job applicants. Fretfully, slavishly, the applicants answer like students who have forgotten to do their homework. Eventually the counterpoint of questions and answers gets so wholly garbled that the dialogue sounds like one of those elementary conversation...

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