William Stevenson
December 15, 2000 AT 05:00 AM EST

Old Money

type
Stage
Current Status
In Season
performer
John Cullum
author
Wendy Wasserstein

We gave it a C

Wendy Wasserstein had a smart idea for her new play Old Money: comparing the original owners of a beaux arts Manhattan mansion with its current nouveau riche inhabitants. Unfortunately, the characters from the two gilded ages collide inelegantly, and the playwright offers little fresh insight into old or new money. Even worse, there’s barely a trace of the wit Wasserstein displayed in The Heidi Chronicles or The Sisters Rosensweig. And despite heavyhanded references to Henry James and Edith Wharton, only Thomas Lynch’s sumptuous set, a few vintage tunes, and John Cullum’s touching performance evoke turn-of-the-20th-century New York. C

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