Stage Review

The Most Fabulous Story Ever Told

When Paul Rudnick's outrageously funny comedy about Adam and Steve, a gay retelling of the Bible, opened last year, its most shocking aspect was the lack of outrage by conservatives. The Most Fabulous Story opened rather quietly to mixed reviews and set up shop Off Broadway, where spring ticket sales, in general, have been dry. Now the play is scheduled to close May 2, and that is the real outrage, since it has actually improved in the last few months. Rudnick (Jeffrey, In & Out), who's capable of penning the most fabulous one-liners ever written (''Angels are just Prozac for poor people''), has tightened the Thornton Wilder-esque script, which is no small feat, since he's chronicling the journey of Adam and Steve and their lesbian friends, Jane and Mabel, from the Garden of Eden to modern-day Manhattan. Rudnick has made the funny bits funnier, the dramatic turns more graceful, and the cast — now including the phenomenal comedic talents of Julie Halston as a wheelchair-bound public-access-TV rabbi and Lea DeLaria as the pushy Jane — spins comic gold. Most fabulous of all: Peter Bartlett's hilarious performance as a bitchy pharaoh enslaving homosexuals to build his pyramids. ''Oh, look at them all,'' he whines, ''just sitting there criticizing.'' No complaints here. A

Originally posted Apr 23, 1999 Published in issue #482 Apr 23, 1999 Order article reprints
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