The Theater: Laughs That Bleed Truth

With the attrition of metropolitan dailies, the power to influence Manhattan theatergoers lies largely in the hands of one man, the drama critic of the New York Times. Last week a negative notice by Clive Barnes, acted upon in scandalous haste by Co-Producers Joseph Kipness and Larry Kasha, sundered the life of a fine comedy, Oliver Hailey's Father's Day, after one performance.

While he relishes his celebrity status, Barnes worries about this degree of power. To mitigate it, he customarily bends over backward to find something to praise even when the show is arrant...

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