The Drama Desk and Obie Award-Winning Keen Company’s season-long tribute to the work of Michael Frayn, kicked off with this fall’s sold-out hit ALPHABETICAL ORDER. Next from the author of COPENHAGEN, NOISES OFF and DEMOCRACY comes this drama about an architect, whose idealistic plan to build an urban housing development, wreaks unexpected consequences for his marriage and his neighbors.
Benefactors is by Michael Frayn, who’s name I was not necessarily familiar with, but I know his plays. He did Noises Off and he did the terrific, Copenhagen. Benefactors is set in Britain with two couples. I don’t want to tell you too much about it, but it’s really a delightful play looking at the cost of charity and no good deed goes unpunished, and also it’s a very interesting theme. The cast is terrific, the writing is good, the second half is a lot more fun than the first. But the first half is pretty serious theater. The second half is much funnier in a sort of humanistic kind of way. Four stars. It’s really great theater.