The Theater: Club Bore

Edward Albee almost seems to have lived through two careers, one very exciting, the other increasingly depressing. From The Zoo Story through The American Dream to Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, he displayed great gusto, waspish humor and feral power. In the succeeding nine years, he has foundered in murky metaphysics (Tiny Alice), dabbled in adaptations (The Ballad of the Sad Cafe) and gone down experimental blind alleys (Box-Mao-Box). Instead of lunging for the jugular, as he once did, Albee has cultivated a Jamesian languor in his prose, a fastidious dandyism of manner, a dusty, librarefied reserve. Portentousness of delivery is...

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