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LOAD-DATE: December 5, 2008
CORRECTION-DATE: January 9, 2009
CORRECTION: An article on Dec. 5 about financial problems at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles misstated the size of the museum's endowment a decade ago. At the end of the 1999-2000 fiscal year, on June 30, 2000, the value of the endowment was $42.7 million; it was not ''nearly $50 million'' in 1999. This correction was delayed for research.
GRAPHIC: PHOTO: The Museum of Contemporary Art in Los Angeles faces a financial crisis that threatens its survival as an independent institution.(PHOTOGRAPH BY MONICA ALMEIDA/THE NEW YORK TIMES) (pg. A27)
Copyright 2008 The New York Times Company
91 of 1231 DOCUMENTS
The New York Times
December 5, 2008 Friday
The New York Times on the Web
BYLINE: By THE NEW YORK TIMES
SECTION: Section ; Column 0; Movies, Performing Arts/Weekend Desk; Pg.
LENGTH: 4411 words
Approximate running times are in parentheses. Theaters are in Manhattan unless otherwise noted. Full reviews of current shows, additional listings, showtimes and tickets: nytimes.com/theater.
Previews and Openings
'BEASLEY'S CHRISTMAS PARTY' In previews; opens on Sunday. The Keen Company unearths this holiday play by Booth Tarkington (''The Magnificent Ambersons'') about a curious journalist and his unusual next-door neighbors (1:30). Clurman Theater, 410 West 42nd Street, Clinton, (212) 279-4200.
'CHAIR' Previews start on Friday. Opens on Thursday. Theater for a New Audience presents a revival of Edward Bond's rarely produced vision of an Orwellian world in which a kindly gesture brings unexpected consequences (1:30). The Duke Theater, 229 West 42nd Street, (646) 323-3010.
'THE CRIPPLE OF INISHMAAN' Previews start on Tuesday. Opens on Dec. 18. Garry Hynes directs this revival of Martin McDonagh's play about a Hollywood filmmaker arriving in a sleepy corner of Ireland to shoot his new film. A co-production of the Druid Theater and the Atlantic Theater Company. Atlantic Theater, 336 West 20th Street, Chelsea, (212) 279-4200.
'HOME' In previews; opens on Sunday. Part of the Signature's season of works by the Negro Ensemble Company, this is a revival of Samm-Art Williams's play about a man who goes north to find prosperity (1:40). Signature Theater Company at the Peter Norton Space, 555 West 42nd Street, Clinton, (212) 244-7529.
'NEW HOUSE UNDER CONSTRUCTION' In previews; opens on Wednesday. This world-premiere drama follows two married couples who reunite in the town they grew up in (2:00). 59E59 Theaters, 59 East 59th Street, (212) 279-4200.
'PAL JOEY' In previews; opens on Dec. 18. Matthew Risch plays the title role in this long-awaited revival of the 1940 Rodgers and Hart musical about a song-and-dance man from Chicago who dreams of owning a nightclub. Richard Greenberg has revised the book. Studio 54, 254 West 54th Street, (212) 719-1300.
'PRAYER FOR MY ENEMY' In previews; opens on Tuesday. Childhood friends are reunited on the eve of the first tour of duty in Baghdad for one of them in this New York premiere by Craig Lucas (1:40). Playwrights Horizons, 416 West 42nd Street, Clinton, (212) 279-4200.
'SHREK THE MUSICAL' In previews; opens on Dec. 14. Broadway's spin on the beloved animated movie, with music and book by Jeanine Tesori (''Caroline, or Change'') and David Lindsay-Abaire (''Rabbit Hole''). Broadway Theater, 1681 Broadway, at 53rd Street, (212) 239-6200.
'SLAVA'S SNOWSHOW' In previews; opens on Sunday. This Russian clowning spectacle moves to Broadway (1:30). Helen Hayes Theater, 240 West 44th Street, (212) 239-6200.
'WOMAN BEWARE WOMAN' Previews start on Tuesday. Opens on Dec. 14. Red Bull Theater revives Thomas Middleton's Jacobean satire of sexual politics (2:15). Theater at St. Clements, 423 West 46th Street, Clinton, (212) 352-3101.
* 'ALFRED HITCHCOCK'S THE 39 STEPS' An absurdly enjoyable, gleefully theatrical riff on the 1935 Hitchcock movie, directed by Maria Aitken and featuring a cast of four that feels like a cast of thousands. This fast, frothy exercise in legerdemain is throwaway theater at its finest (1:45). Cort Theater, 138 West 48th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Ben Brantley)
'ALL MY SONS' The director Simon McBurney's baleful reimagining of Arthur Miller's 1947 drama about American guilt and self-delusion in the shadow of World War II. Plying the ritualistic formality and portentousness of Greek tragedy, Mr. McBurney steals every scene from his human props, a high-profile crew led by John Lithgow, Patrick Wilson, Dianne Wiest and Katie Holmes (2:10). Gerald Schoenfeld Theater, 236 West 45th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
* 'AUGUST: OSAGE COUNTY' Tracy Letts's turbocharged tragicomedy about an Oklahoma clan in a state of near-apocalyptic meltdown is the most exciting new American play Broadway has seen in years. Fiercely funny and bitingly sad, it somehow finds fresh sources of insight in that classic staple of the stage, the disintegrating American family (3:20). Music Box Theater, 239 West 45th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Charles Isherwood)
'BILLY ELLIOT THE MUSICAL' An exultant exploration of the urge to dance that both artfully anatomizes and brazenly exploits the fundamental appeal of musicals themselves. This film-based tale of a coal miner's son with ballet dreams has been staged with prodigious inventiveness by the director Stephen Daldry and the choreographer Peter Darling, with soulful music by Elton John (2:50). Imperial Theater, 249 West 45th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
* 'BOEING-BOEING' Marco Camoletti's smirky French farce from the 1960s about a triple-timing roue has been given the makeover of the season by the director Matthew Warchus. This high-spirited production soars into an unpolluted stratosphere of classical physical comedy (2:30). Longacre Theater, 220 West 48th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'DISNEY'S THE LITTLE MERMAID' The motto for this charm-free musical blunderbuss, based on the charming 1989 Disney movie, might be ''You can't go broke overestimating the taste of preschoolers.'' Francesca Zambello directs an overwhelmed cast (2:20). Lunt-Fontanne Theater, 205 West 46th Street, (212) 307-4747. (Brantley)
'DIVIDING THE ESTATE' Horton Foote's tart and delicious comedy about a fraying, squabbling Texas family in financial straits features an ideally balanced ensemble and a portrait of true comic genius from Hallie Foote, the playwright's daughter. Michael Wilson directs a fine, funny cast that includes Elizabeth Ashley, Gerald McRaney and Penny Fuller (2:15). Booth Theater, 222 West 45th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'EQUUS' Peter Shaffer's upper-middle-brow psychodrama from 1973 returns in Thea Sharrock's oddly arid revival, enlivened by two fine performances: Daniel Radcliffe makes an impressive Broadway debut as the stableboy who commits crimes against horses, and Richard Griffiths is superb as his ambivalent psychiatrist (2:40). Broadhurst Theater, 235 West 44th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
* 'GYPSY' As the dangerously obsessed Momma Rose, Patti LuPone has found her focus. And when Ms. LuPone is truly focused, she's a laser, she incinerates. Directed by Arthur Laurents, this wallop-packing incarnation of the great musical showbiz fable, also starring the superb Boyd Gaines and Laura Benanti, shines with a magnified, soul-revealing transparency (2:30). St. James Theater, 246 West 44th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
* 'IN THE HEIGHTS' Lin-Manuel Miranda, who wrote the bubbly Latin pop score for this musical about barrio life, also gives a captivating performance as the owner of a bodega who dispenses good cheer along with cafe con leche. Zesty choreography and a host of lively performers are among its other assets; its fundamental flaw is a vivid streak of sentimentality (2:20). Richard Rodgers Theater, 226 West 46th Street, (212) 307-4100. (Isherwood)
'IRVING BERLIN'S WHITE CHRISTMAS' A bland, efficient stage retread of the 1954 Bing Crosby-Danny Kaye movie, with extra Irving Berlin songs stuffed in the stocking. Not for the kitsch-averse (2:30). Marquis Theater, 1535 Broadway, at 45th Street, (212) 307-4100. (Isherwood)
'A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS' As the title character in this respectful revival of Robert Bolt's 1960 drama about Sir Thomas More's road to martyrdom in the age of Henry VIII, Frank Langella haloes himself with Great Presence incandescence. But even he can't find much variety in the monolithic goodness of his role. Doug Hughes directs (2:40). American Airlines Theater, 227 West 42nd Street, (212) 719-1300. (Brantley)
'THE SEAGULL' Ian Rickson's production, starring Kristin Scott Thomas, may be the finest and most fully involving presentation of Chekhov of this generation. Mackenzie Crook, Peter Sarsgaard, Carey Mulligan and Zoe Kazan are part of a top-flight cast that finds as much heartbreaking eloquence in silence as in speech (2:45). Walter Kerr Theater, 219 West 48th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
* 'SOUTH PACIFIC' Bartlett Sher's rapturous revival of this Rodgers and Hammerstein classic recreates the unabashed, unquestioning romance American theatergoers once had with the American book musical (2:50). Vivian Beaumont Theater, 150 West 65th Street, Lincoln Center, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'SPEED-THE-PLOW' Neil Pepe's exhilarating revival of David Mamet's short and unsparing study of sharks in the shallows of Hollywood moves like a world-class roller coaster. Starring the ace team of Jeremy Piven, Raul Esparza and Elisabeth Moss, who lead us through corkscrew curves at top velocity (1:25). Barrymore Theater, 243 West 47th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'13' This shiny, brassy and formulaic musical about the pursuit of popularity is unlikely to wow anyone who isn't in early adolescence. The bubbly score is by Jason Robert Brown, and the show's talented cast members and musicians are all under voting age (1:30). Bernard B. Jacobs Theater, 242 West 45th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'THE ATHEIST' Campbell Scott stars as a corrupt reporter merrily recounting the misdeeds that made his name in this stale solo show by Ronan Noone. Mr. Scott's altar-boyish good looks make for a piquant contrast with his character's corroded soul, but the writing doesn't give him much to work with (1:45). Barrow Street Theater, 27 Barrow Street, West Village, (212) 352-3101. (Isherwood)
'BACK BACK BACK' A disappointingly unjuicy drama about baseball's steroids scandal by Itamar Moses. Three players in the Major Leagues represent various attitudes to the use of suspicious substances. Unfortunately not one is a memorable or richly imagined character (1:35). Manhattan Theater Club, City Center, 131 West 55th Street, (212) 581-1212. (Isherwood)
'BLACK WATCH' Gregory Burke's transfixing play from the National Theater of Scotland, inspired by interviews with soldiers who served in Iraq, is a glorious reminder of the transporting power of the theater. John Tiffany directs this seamless, haunting mix of drama, song and dance (1:50). St. Ann's Warehouse, 38 Water Street, at Dock Street, Dumbo, Brooklyn, (718) 254-8779. (Brantley)
'BLASTED' At long last, Sarah Kane's astounding drama, first staged in London in 1995, arrives in New York. As directed by Sarah Benson and acted by a three-member ensemble with the bravery of hang gliders in a storm, Ms. Kane's disturbing, vital study of the human instinct for inhumanity still registers off the Richter scale as a shocker(1:15). SoHo Rep, 46 Walker Street, between Church Street and Broadway, TriBeCa, (212) 941-8632. (Brantley)
'THE CASTLE' Four ex-convicts tell how they returned to society in this simple and fascinating, if at times overearnest, production. In this nation of overcrowded prisons, its message that we reconsider our treatment of ex-felons is well worth considering (1:00). New World Stages, 340 West 50th Street, Clinton, (212) 239-6200. (Andy Webster)
'CATCH-22' This ambitious and sometimes effective adaptation for the stage of Joseph Heller's classic absurdist novel about World War II ultimately does not overcome the problem of condensing Heller's surreal panorama of hell into a two-hour play (2:15). Lucille Lortel Theater, 121 Christopher Street, West Village, (212) 279-4200. (Wilborn Hampton)
'FORBIDDEN BROADWAY GOES TO REHAB' Having announced that it would be officially ending its merry reign of terror on January 15, Gerard Alessandrini's satirical revue has been blessed with that have-to-win energy that descends on weary racers near the finish line. The liveliest, sauciest and (given its imminent departure) saddest edition in years (1:30). 47th Street Theater, 304 West 47th Street, Clinton, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'GARDEN OF EARTHLY DELIGHTS' Martha Clarke's theatrical meditation on a triptych by Hieronymus Bosch is one of the most haunting spectacles of flesh ever seen on a New York stage. This new, revised production of Ms. Clarke's 1984 dance drama explores notions of sin and salvation, sex and society in imagery that is dark, knotted and utterly spellbinding (1:15). Minetta Lane Theater, 18 Minetta Lane, Greenwich Village, (212) 307-4100. (Isherwood)
'GEOMETRY OF FIRE' Stephen Belber's low-key drama splits its focus between an Iraq war veteran traumatized by his experience and a Saudi-American seeking justice for his dying father. Featuring a quietly compelling performance by Kevin O'Donnell as the ex-marine (1:30). Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, 224 Waverly Place, Greenwich Village, (212) 868-4444. (Isherwood)
'HILLARY: A MODERN GREEK TRAGEDY WITH A (SOMEWHAT) HAPPY ENDING' You may think it's way too early to hear a replay of Bill and Hillary Clinton's years in the White House, but Wendy Weiner keeps it surprisingly fresh, largely by adding Athena and Aphrodite to the mix. Mrs. Clinton becomes a figure both heroic and tragic, pledged to Athena and tormented by the jealous Aphrodite, who sends along Bill Clinton to hinder young Hillary's ambitious plans. Not very deep, perhaps, but funny (1:30). Living Theater, 21 Clinton Street, Lower East Side, (212) 868-4444, (Neil Genzlinger)
'THE MARVELOUS WONDERETTES' When the scheduled singers at a 1958 senior prom cancel, the title characters of this effervescent jukebox musical step in, and we're lucky that they do. The quartet sings hits of the era -- all from a female perspective -- and in the second act they return at their 10-year reunion, weathered and wiser. For a certain generation, and all fanciers of the girl-group sound, ''The Marvelous Wonderettes'' is an utter charm bomb (2:00). the Westside Theater, 407 West 43rd Street, Clinton, (212) 239-6200. (Webster)
'MINDGAME' Keith Carradine plays the proprietor of a cozy mental institution in this cheesy, old-fashioned thriller along the lines of ''Sleuth.'' The British film director Ken Russell doesn't seem to know whether to take this high-octane hokum seriously. Neither did I (2:20). SoHo Playhouse, 15 Vandam Street, South Village, (212) 691-1555. (Isherwood)
'MY VAUDEVILLE MAN' The short but colorful life of the hoofer Jack Donahue is celebrated in this new musical, presented by the York Theater Company. Don't expect fireworks, but this two person, two-hour show aims to please, and mostly does (2:00). York Theater, St. Peter's Lutheran Church, Lexington Avenue at 54th Street, (212) 935-5820. (Claudia La Rocco)
'PARKING LOT LONELY HEART' Colin McKenna pins a lot of his new drama to a shopworn device -- man hires prostitute but just wants to talk to her -- yet there are interesting dynamics once the play gets going. The man, Mickey, has a drug-addled teenage daughter and wants to tell the prostitute all about her. Craig Lee Thomas as the daughter's boyfriend is the high point of this production by Boomerang Theater Company(1:30). Center Stage, 48 West 21st Street, (212) 501-4069. (Genzlinger)
'ROAD SHOW' The trimmed-down, toughened-up and seriously darkened new edition of the musical by Stephen Sondheim and John Weidman formerly known as ''Wise Guys,'' ''Gold'' and ''Bounce.'' This musical biography of the entrepreneurial Mizner brothers, directed by John Doyle, still feels mighty slender. But it has terrific leading performances from Michael Cerveris and Alexander Gemignani (1:40). Public Theater, 425 Lafayette Street, at Astor Place, East Village, (212) 967-7555. (Brantley)
'ROCK OF AGES' The great hair bands of the 1980s finally receive their due in this brash, comic jukebox musical, packed with songs by the likes of Twisted Sister, Poison and Bon Jovi. The flash-and-trash production values and high spirits are agreeable, and Will Swenson of this summer's Central Park ''Hair'' is terrific as a preening rooster of a rock star. But the show is ultimately undone by a bloodless sheen not unlike that of the songs it affectionately pokes fun at (2:15). New World Stages, 340 West 50th Street, Clinton, (212) 239-6200. (Webster)
'ROMANTIC POETRY' John Patrick Shanley's marmalade-sticky ode to the irrationality of love. This oh-so-whimsical musical features many purple metaphors and a score to match by Henry Krieger. Mr. Shanley directs (2:00). Manhattan Theater Club, Stage 1, 131 West 55th Street, (212) 581-1212. (Brantley)
'SATURN RETURNS' Noah Haidle's wintry drama about an 88-year-old doctor, beautifully played by John McMartin, reckoning with the ghosts of the women he loved and lost. Elegantly structured and infused with a quiet melancholy, the play has problems of tone -- and plausibility (1:10). Mitzi E. Newhouse Theater, 150 West 65th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Isherwood)
'SLEEPWALK WITH ME' The comic Mike Birbiglia weaves an 85-minute monologue around his problems with sleepwalking, and his timing, delivery and pacing are just about perfect. The detours he makes from his main story are many and long, and always rewarding (1:25). Bleecker Street Theater, 45 Bleecker Street, at Lafayette Street, East Village, (212) 239-6200. (Genzlinger)
'STREAMERS' A mostly terrific, mostly young cast brings captivating emotional truth to David Rabe's 1976 drama about the sexual and racial tensions among soldiers getting ready to be shipped to Vietnam. The production, directed by Scott Ellis, builds slowly to an explosive climax (2:15). Laura Pels Theater, 111 West 46th Street, (212) 719-1300. (Isherwood)
'TAKING OVER' A fiery, polemical portrait gallery of native Brooklynites under siege from gentrification, created and embodied by the extravagantly talented Danny Hoch. The show zigzags between peaks of brilliance and plateaus of preachiness. But its snapshots of a Dominican taxi dispatcher and an insurrectionary rap artist are priceless (1:35). Public Theater, 425 Lafayette Street, at Astor Place, East Village, (212) 967-7555. (Brantley)
'WHAT'S THAT SMELL: THE MUSIC OF JACOB STERLING' David Pittu portrays a luckless, talentless songwriter in this ingenious spoof of showbiz also-rans. Jacob fancies himself a Stephen Sondheim manque, but his hilariously bad compositions tell another story. Peter Bartlett is also a treat as the host of a cable television show leading Jacob down memory lane. The superbad show tunes feature Mr. Pittu's lyrics (he also wrote the book) and music by Randy Redd (1:20). New World Stages, 340 West 50th Street, Clinton, (212) 239-6200. (Isherwood)
'LA VIDA ES SUENO/LIFE IS A DREAM' Repertorio Espanol's good-looking, nicely staged production of Pedro Calderon de La Barca's 17th-century classic is performed entirely in Spanish. Headsets with simultaneous translation are available for English-speaking theatergoers (2:15). Repertorio Espanol, Gramercy Arts Theater, 138 East 27th Street, (212) 225-9920. (Anita Gates)
Off Off Broadway
'ARIAS WITH A TWIST' Eat your heart out, Madonna. The chanteuses who play Madison Square Garden have never experienced the imaginative heights of spectacle with which the puppet master Basil Twist surrounds the drag performer Joey Arias. Despite the presence of some enchanting marionettes, this is not, for the record, a kiddie show (1:10). Here Arts Center, 145 Avenue of the Americas, at Dominick Street, South Village, (212) 352-3101. (Brantley)
'CELEBRITY AUTOBIOGRAPHY: IN THEIR OWN WORDS' A rotating cast of comics and actors -- Kristen Johnston, Andrea Martin and a few ''Saturday Night Live'' alums among them -- read selections of the witless wisdom culled from the tell-all tomes of the rich and famous. A nice tonic for our fame-addled age (1:30). Triad Theater, 158 West 72nd Street, (212) 868-4444. (Isherwood)
'GAUGUIN/SAVAGE LIGHT' George Fischoff, who composed some 1960s pop hits, accompanies himself energetically in this one-man musical about Paul Gauguin. Mr. Fischoff gives a pocket biography of Gauguin, surrounded by reproductions of that artist's paintings. Saturdays and Sundays, Studio 353, 353 West 48th Street, Clinton, (212) 868-4444.
'THE LANGUAGE OF TREES' Steven Lenson's drama depicts both the traumatic experience of an interpreter in the Iraq war and the fallout at home, where his wife struggles to find the words to impart the painful truth to their young son. Sensitively acted and written, although the flights into fancy are problematic (1:30). Roundabout Black Box Theater, at the Harold and Miriam Steinberg Center for Theater, 111 West 46th Street, (212) 719-1300.
'SUSPICIOUS PACKAGE' This participatory production involves only four actors, and if you check it out, you'll be one. Participants portray characters from a film-noir narrative and are given hand-held media players, each loaded with an audiovisual file providing voice-overs, flashbacks, a script and a map spanning three Brooklyn blocks. If you can embrace the recreational spirit of the thing -- and if you like role-playing games with your ear buds -- you'll have fun (45 minutes). Brick Theater, 575 Metropolitan Avenue, near Union Avenue, Williamsburg, Brooklyn, (212) 352-3101. (Webster)
'BIG APPLE CIRCUS: PLAY ON!' Thoroughly entertaining (2:15). Damrosch Park, Lincoln Center, (800) 922-3772. (Lawrence Van Gelder)
'BIRDHOUSE FACTORY' Engrossingly entertaining (1:20). The New Victory Theater, 229 West 42nd Street, (646) 223-3010. (Van Gelder)
'THE RADIO CITY CHRISTMAS SPECTACULAR' Radiant and heartwarming (1:30). Radio City Music Hall, (212) 307-4100. (Van Gelder)
'WINTUK' The French Canadian juggernaut Cirque du Soleil brings its coolly professional, whimsy-filled kids' show about the search for a snow day back for the holiday season (1:30). WaMu Theater at Madison Square Garden, (212) 307-1000.
'ALTAR BOYZ' This sweetly satirical show about a Christian pop group made up of five potential Teen People cover boys is an enjoyable, silly diversion (1:30). New World Stages, 340 West 50th Street, Clinton, (212) 239-6200. (Isherwood)
'AVENUE Q' R-rated puppets give lively life lessons (2:10). Golden Theater, 252 West 45th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'CHICAGO' Irrefutable proof that crime pays (2:25). Ambassador Theater, 219 West 49th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'THE FANTASTICKS' A revival -- well, more like a resuscitation -- of the Little Musical That Wouldn't Die (2:05). Snapple Theater Center, 210 West 50th Street, (212) 307-4100. (Brantley)
'FUERZA BRUTA' A sensory bath aimed at clubgoing college kids in search of cultural diversion (1:05). Daryl Roth Theater, 20 Union Square East, at 15th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Isherwood)
'GREASE' As limp as yesterday's French fry (2:15). Brooks Atkinson Theater, 256 West 47th Street, (212) 307-4100. (Brantley)
'HAIRSPRAY' Fizzy pop, cute kids, large man in a housedress (2:30). Neil Simon Theater, 250 West 52nd Street, (212) 307-4100. (Brantley)
'JERSEY BOYS' The biomusical that walks like a man (2:30). August Wilson Theater, 245 West 52nd Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'THE LION KING' Disney on safari, where the big bucks roam (2:45). Minskoff Theater, 200 West 45th Street, at Broadway, (212) 307-4100. (Brantley)
'MAMMA MIA!' The jukebox that devoured Broadway (2:20). Cadillac Winter Garden Theater, 1634 Broadway, at 50th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'MARY POPPINS' P. L. Travers meets Dr. Phil (2:30). New Amsterdam Theater, 214 West 42nd Street, (212) 307-4747. (Brantley)
'THE NEW MEL BROOKS MUSICAL YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN' Monstrously underwhelming (2:45). Hilton Theater, 213 West 42nd Street, (212) 307-4100. (Brantley)
'MY FIRST TIME' Ken Davenport's venture into Web-theater synergy mines a site called MyFirstTime.com to cull stories of inaugural encounters with sex (1:30). New World Stages, 340 West 50th Street, Clinton, (212) 239-6200. (Ginia Bellafante)
'THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA' Who was that masked man, anyway? (2:30). Majestic Theater, 247 West 44th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'SPAMALOT' A singing scrapbook for Monty Python fans (2:20). Shubert Theater, 225 West 44th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Brantley)
'SPRING AWAKENING' An explosively good new musical about teenage angst in 19th-century Germany, set to melodious, post-punk pop music by Duncan Sheik (2:00). Eugene O'Neill Theater, 230 West 49th Street, (212) 239-6200. (Isherwood)
'WICKED' Oz revisited, with political corrections (2:45). Gershwin Theater, 222 West 51st Street, (212) 307-4100. (Brantley)
'CAPTURE NOW' In this one-man show the actor-playwright Josh Jonas tells a Long Island tale of a teenager, Elijah, and his bond with his younger brother, Ace. Elijah teaches Ace a lot about rock 'n' roll, and Ace has much to teach him about love and life -- before terminal illness descends. The built-in emotional sledgehammer in this production is almost too obvious, and yet Mr. Jonas effectively conveys the illusion of personal experience. No small feat, that (1:30). Theaters at 45 Bleecker Street, at Lafayette Street, East Village, (212) 239-6200; closes on Saturday. (Webster)
'CARAPACE ISLE' In Jim Courie's sympathetic but undercooked comic drama, a young New York artist battling cancer goes home to her parents in North Carolina and finds much less than the comfort she'd hoped for (1:30). Manhattan Repertory Theater, 303 West 42nd Street, Clinton, (646) 329-6588; closes on Friday. (Gates)
'DAWN' Thomas Bradshaw has written some aggressively provocative plays, and with ''Dawn,'' a tale of alcoholism and incest, he is to some extent a victim of his own notoriety. He takes a very long time rolling out what appears to be an ordinary tale of a man finding salvation through Alcoholics Anonymous. It becomes tedious because you know he's going to become scandalous eventually. When he finally does, the play, performed by the Bat Theater Company at the Flea, catches fire, burning hotly until a cliche ending (1:30). the Flea Theater, 41 White Street, near Church Street, TriBeCa, (212) 352-3101; closes on Saturday.
'MOUTH TO MOUTH' Kevin Elyot's mordant, mournful play about the limits of friendship and family, as embodied by a group of solipsistic Londoners. Ruthlessly observed and deftly acted, under Mark Brokaw's direction, with an outstanding performance by David Cale as a dangerously needy gay man (2:00). Acorn Theater on Theater Row, 410 West 42nd Street, Clinton, (212) 279-4200; closes on Sunday. (Brantley)