Judging from a sample of its dialogue, Passing Strangers, the original musical opening at Adams House this weekend, can find humor in the most serious situations. When Todd, a drifter, meets Lynette, a woman looking for more than another one night stand, she tells him that she's "really going out on a limb with you." Isn't that a little condescending? Todd asks. "It's a lot condescending. I am a lot condescending. But I promise to keep my mouth shut in bed." Lynette says. "I wouldn't want that," Todd answers "Well," she retorts, "at least I won't talk."
As its writer-composer-director Andy Berger '78 says, Passing Strangers takes place "anywhere and everywhere." It raises questions of identity, sexual frustration and the inadequacy of communication between two women and two men. But what makes Passing Strangers more than just another scene in your own suite are its 13 songs, written Berger says in a mixture of light rock, a pop style, gospel and blues, which are positioned in between the scenes and comment on the action. The play, produced on a five platform multi-level set emerges as a "montage", unusual, surprising, funny, warm and delightful variations on familiar themes. Performances are tonight through Sunday at Adams at 8:30 p.m. Tickets $2 at Holyoke Center or at the door.
Low, ominous chords in the background. In the foreground our poor heroine pitiously bemoans as the barker comes to foreclose her mortgage and an Indian threatens her if she refuses to yield to his demands. Suddenly, clad like the true-blue forest ranger he is, our hero appears to save her. Sound like a scene from a silent movie anyone ever associated with it would rather forget? No, it's the storyline for Little Mary Sunshine, the operetta playing at South House this weekend.
Long before our heroine is rescued, you will have realized that Sunshine is not so gullible as its title and plot line suppose. In reality, Sunshine is nothing less than a very funny musical comedy satire of the Nelson Eddy and Jenette MacDonald films that were so popular in the 1930's. The show played successfully on Broadway for three years in the early sixties and now a group of freshmen at the Quad are directing and producing it in an attempt to show Dean Fox, as director Greg Dealwie '80 has pointed out, that freshmen aren't just sitting and waiting to move down from Radcliffe. Performances are tonight through Saturday and next weekend at 8 p.m. in the Cabot Living Room at South House. Tickets are $2.
"This is the winter of our discontent." The Shakespearian line keeps pounding in the brain as you watch the aging Henry II of The Lion In Winter try to hold together the tenuous union of twelfth century fiefdoms he had built. But with one son unable to understand why a house must be undivided and with the other wickedly conspiring with his mother to usurp all, Henry doesn't have much of a chance from the start. By staging the play this weekend, the Leverett House Drama Society is readapting an adaptation, known better as the movie version with Peter O'Toole and Katherine Hepburn as Eleanore of Acquitaine, the independently minded queen, to the setting for which it was intended. Performances are tonight through Sunday and next weekend at 8p.m. in the Leverett House Old Library Theater. Tickets cost $2 and are available at Holyoke Center and at the door.
What's an original musical comedy that mocks everything from the socratic method to pick-ups in the library, that's a real Harvard tradition and that isn't just a lower class Pudding show? The Law School show, of course. With a plot that promises to be as thoroughly indescribable as everything we've come to expect from over there, it's hard to say anything about Holmes is Where the Hark Is, except that even if you don't get two-thirds of the jokes you probably should still go. The other third may be worth it. Performances are tonight through Sunday at 8 p.m. and March 23-29 at the Law School's Pound Building. Admission is $2.50 Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday and $3 on Friday and Saturday. Tickets are sold at Holyoke and at the Langdell Reception Desk.
With a plot complicated enough to confuse even the most well-connected in the audience and some songs which might leave Jerome Kern wondering if pieces of his Showboat ever floated into Cambridge, the exuberant cast of leading men has taken its annual sidestep into the Hasty Pudding Theater. Cardinal Knowledge, at least ostensibly, is about a cardinal trying to track down the inheritance of his girlfriend in 17th century France but, as usual at the Hasty Pudding, it's the good time you have, not the money you lost that counts. And with the excellently choreographed, excellently executed dance numbers, and terrific stage design (not to mention the cork popping that goes on at most performances), good times you're certain to have. If you're still left a little uneasy, wondering if you haven't seen those unshapely claves and heard those borrowed gags in a bad dream somewhere before, just remember again, it's the good times (and the tradition) that counts. Performances run through the end of March.