At the Peabody Playhouse

Gentlemen, the New England Repertory has really been kicking the gong around of late. With a flying swan dive off the deep end, they have produced "Adam the Creator" by the Czech "enfant terrible" of the theatre, Karel Capek. The general keynote of the script is that God made an awful mess of things during those first seven days--but then, again, is there anyone in the audience who thinks he could do a better job?

To scare anyone out of the idea, Capek takes a poor, benighted nihilist, lets him blow up the world, and start all over again. Adam, the nihilist, proceeds to get himself mixed up with a clinging vine, mass production, Nazism, Communism, religion, and democracy, and in the end passes the world back to God, apparently mighty glad to get out of the job of Creator. Yet while Mr. Capek takes agile swats at every political theory in sight, his only constructive theory seems to be to leave everything in the hands of God. Perhaps that's all the Czechs can do at the moment.

To put on this weird and wild fantasy, the New England Repertory has pulled out some fine actors and an appropriate set. Edwin Pettet heads the cast as Adam and carries the show, backed by a large and lusty supporting cast. It is noteworthy that with such an ambitious script and hefty cast, the production clicks. There are a few rough edges and, while parts of the play itself are completely mystifying, the show has so much color and vitality, and, as a whole, meaning, that it seems well-worth a trip down to the Peabody Playhouse.