Happy Days is a two-act, two-character play by Samuel Beckett that proves to be the toughest nut that the Summer School Repertory Theater has tried to crack all season. Joanne Hamlin plays the eternally-optimistic Winnie in what turns out to be a tour de force performance. Throughout the show Hamlin, who has about 95 per cent of all the spoken lines in the play, is buried in a mound of sand, and it is a wonder she can carry her own enthusiasm let alone Winnie's. Despite Hamlin's excellent job, the show is not all that exciting. 90-minute monologues, which is essentially what Beckett has to offer, are hard to make theatrically charging and this production at the Loeb does not meet the challenge The play has its comic moments, which director George Hamlin exploits to the hilt, but it is also awfully depressing--making it all the more painful to watch.
The Summer School Dance Center is presenting the original works of its students Wednesday night at 8:30. This is the culmination of the center's teaching season; the students have worked with the center's outstanding choreographers all season long, and for this production the teaching staff has selected the best student work for public presentation. Certainly a more sensible way of finishing a summer program than final exams. Also more entertaining to watch than finals.
A Man For All Seasons, Robert Bolt's wonderful historical drama about Thomas More, runs at Boston's Wilbur Theater until the end of the month. The play is as important today as it was when Paul Scofield created the leading role more than a decade ago: Sir Thomas, it should be pointed out, had post-Watergate morality hundreds of years before Watergate, and it wasn't even an election year.
The End of the Summer, and not a moment too soon. I don't have to write these ridiculous listings any more, and, better yet, you won't have to read them. All of us in the fun-and-games department wish all of you a pleasant and productive fall as you go and continue the fight against the forces of evil and oppression. A special wish of luck goes to Josh Rubins, dean of students at the Summer School: If his musical comedies are as funny as his administrative talents, he's sure to be a smash on the Great White Way. When you leave Cambridge, remember the inspiring couplet incribed over the North Yard Gate: "Two, four, six, eight/Ford is a tool of the corporate state."