Theater: Speaking The Plain Truth OUR TOWN

by Thornton Wilder

Plays can prove themselves to be lasting literature in two ways. Some, like Hamlet, show a protean adaptability that allows each interpreter to find a different theme or message. Others, like Our Town, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary with a robustly funny Broadway revival that opened last week, say much the same things in every production, yet manage to do so with a seemingly inexhaustible freshness. Actors and directors, predictably, tend to prefer the protean kind of play, because it gives them greater opportunity to display creativity and intelligence. But audiences can be just as happy with the second kind,...

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