Theater: Best of 1981: Theater

Crimes of the Heart. Three sisters, nurtured in Southern gothic grotesquerie, induce spasms of laughter in Beth Henley's Pulitzer-prizewinning drama. Dreamgirls. A pearl in the strand of notable U.S. musicals. There is dazzling elegance in Theoni V. Aldredge's costumes, and a young belter named Jennifer Holliday can start, stop and steal a show. (See above.) The Dresser. Paul Rogers plays a decrepit provincial Shakespearean actor-manager; Tom Courtenay, his valet. In double image, they are Lear and his Fool—and both are magnificent.

Key Exchange. A trio of free spirits have wry and funny flings at love in the modern mode. A dandy playwright...

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