Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXII, No. 43
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
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(Photo by T. Charles Erickson)

“A VALENTINE… A WALTZ”: Matt Friedman (Richard Schiff), 42-year-old Jewish accountant, pursues his courtship of Sally Talley (Margot White), 31-year-old independent-thinking Missouri nurse, in an old, run-down boathouse on a summer evening of 1944, in a revival of Lanford Wilson’s “Talley’s Folly” (1979), at McCarter’s Matthews Theatre through November 2.

McCarter Revives Lanford Wilson Masterpiece, “Talley’s Folly;” A “No-Holds-Barred Romantic Story” of an Unlikely Courtship

Donald Gilpin

The social contexts here are rich. It’s 1944, wartime. The setting is a run-down Victorian boathouse, where Matt, a 42-year-old Jewish accountant, and Sally, a 31-yearold independent-thinking Missouri nurse, meet by moonlight. Offstage is heard the barking of dogs at Sally’s house, where her troubled, anti-Semitic family members loom, contemptuous of both Sally and her intrusive suitor.

Lanford Wilson’s Talley’s Folly (1979), in a revival at McCarter’s Matthews Theatre through November 2, could be about the impact of war on the home front and its economic, psychological and personal repercussions. It could be about the power of a setting (The “folly” of the title is a reference to, among other things, the architecturally extravagant boathouse where the play takes place.), particularly resonant in romantic and familial associations. The play could be about a daughter’s conflicts with her prosperous, dysfunctional family and a Jewish man, who has fled across Europe to America, dealing with the ravages and tragedies of his life and his family.

The Dryden Ensemble Performs Tribute to Princeton Scholar William Scheide

Nancy Plum

The Dryden Ensemble took a small break from performing in Princeton a couple of years ago. Once one of the stable groups performing in Richardson Auditorium, the Baroque specialty ensemble has now taken up residence in Miller Chapel of the Princeton Seminary (which apparently is able to provide some support). Although a much smaller venue, with seating that somewhat reduces the audiences ability to see the players, Miller Chapel nonetheless seems to be suiting the ensemble well.

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