Albee Damned

The effect of Albee's play on the audience is indeed powerful--during one recent performance, older people squirmed in their seats, middle-aged people looked stricken, and some younger people seemed bewildered or just bummed out. But though the play does hit home, it ultimately misses the mark.

As he so often does, the pessimistic Albee fails to consider the redemptive power of love acting on human consciousness or even the deep human impulse toward goodness. His plays are always honest--but while the viewer may glimpse the greater possibilities of living, Albee himself never seems to. In his vision, life is nasty, brutish and short. And forgiving oneself is a pale response to so much misery.

Three Tall Women, through March 29 at the Ricketson Theatre, in the Plex at 14th and Curtis, 893-4100.

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