Night and Her Stars Closing (Theater and Galleries) Recommended The Short List (Theater)

When: Thursdays-Sundays. Continues through April 24 2011

The timing was lousy for Richard Greenberg's 1995 drama about the 1950s game show scandals: it opened just seven months after Robert Redford's movie Quiz Show, which covers the same ground. But Michael Patrick Thornton's smart if slightly self-conscious production resonates in the age of faux-reality TV and its insta-celebs. Seeing Raymond Shoemaker's nebbishy Herb Stempel realize that reptilian producers have been using him as an ethnic foil for Jay Worthington's Ivy League Charles Van Doren is more painful than, well, seeing Snooki get a book deal. Greenberg's chorus of congressmen and celebrity kibitzers comes across as precious, and some actors were looking for their legs on opening night. Still, the manipulations of network suits pack a coldhearted wallop worth of Paddy Chayefsky. --Kerry Reid

Price: $22-$32

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