The Theater: On to the Triple Crown

THE CONTRACTOR

One of British Playwright David Storey's avocations is painting, and as a dramatist he depicts still lifes. His detractors emphasize the "still"—nothing happens in a Storey play. His admirers emphasize the "life"—everything that constitutes the experience of a lifetime has been distilled into two hours of stage time. When playgoers choose up sides, their vehemence, all by itself, testifies to one thing: we are in the presence of a playwright of consequence.

Though it was written prior to Home and The Changing Room, The Contractor may be the best play of the three. Few dramas exemplify with greater purity the...

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