The Boys in the Band, Mart Crowley's 1968 gay theatre landmark, is being revived and reconsidered off-Broadway by the WPA Theatre. Previews being June 4. The play is about a group of gay men who hire a hustler as a birthday present for one of their number, but wind up spending the night of the party airing their pleasures and miseries. It was one of the first plays to deal with contemporary life among homosexuals so openly, and went on to become a 1000-performance hit in its original production.
Acknowledged or not, the play served as spiritual father to everything from Party to Love! Valour! Compassion! Nevertheless, the play's reputation went into decline in the 1980s as an overly negative and stereotyped view of gay life. Directed by Kenneth Eliott, the new production seeks a contemporary re-exploration characters.
Performances are 8 PM Mon.-Fri.; 6 and 10 PM Sat. Tickets cost $35. For information: (212) 206-0523.