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Oh, Dad, Poor Dad is finally opening off Broadway.
The play, written by Arthur L. Kopit '59, was introduced by the Adams House Drama Society at Agassiz Hall in January 1960. Record-breaking crowds and a 320 per cent return on the initial investment led to a re-run of the show in February.
In London, Oh, Dad, Poor Dad, Mama's Hung You In the Closet and I'm Feelin' So Sad closed shortly after it opened in the spring of 1961. It received mixed reviews; the Observer called the play great, the production poor.
Kopit, who majored in engineering at Harvard, maintains that "realism on the stage is just plain dull."
Oh, Dad, consequently, is about a pale young man whose mother locks him in his hotel room to keep him safe from the world outside. His father, mummified, does indeed hang in the closet.
Jo Van Fleet to Star
Jo Van Fleet will star in the New York production, opening at the Phoenix Theatre on February 19.
Appearing on a double bill with Oh, Dad is another Kopit play, Sing to Me Through Open Windows, which appeared at Dunster House in 1959. This one concerns a magician who, unable to keep drawing crowds, retires to an abandoned house with his servant, a clown.
Music for Sing to Me Through Open Windows was composed by Thomas G. Beveridge '59, who was chosen "class odist." He is also the writer of a one-act opera which was produced here and later shown on WGBH-TV. While at Harvard, Beveridge was pianist for the Glee Club.
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