'THE DAUGHTER-IN-LAW' Though better remembered now for his novels, D.H. Lawrence (1885-1930) spent a good part of his early career as one of the better-known faces on London's playwrights' workshop circuit, rarely making it to the full-production stage. The extent of his efforts wasn't known till his complete plays were published, and many produced, in the rejuvenated London theater of the 1960s. They have yet to make a dent over here. Maybe the Mint Theatre's resuscitation of this one, about a family crisis set against the background of a 1911 coal strike, will start a trend. PREVIEWS BEGIN SATURDAY, OPENS JUNE 15, Mint Theatre, 311 West 43rd Street, 212-315-0231. (Feingold)

'GHOSTS' The Royal Dramatic Theatre of Sweden returns with another too brief bout of Bergman at BAM, our theatrical equivalent of manna from heaven. People used to say Ibsen's 1881 masterpiece was medically dated; then came AIDS. But the founder of modern drama knew what he was doing: Really a study of family secrets and Christian hypocrisy in a repressive time, his play couldn't arrive at an apter time (bring your Evangelical friends) or in a production likely to be more exciting. Pernilla August, previously Bergman's Ophelia and Nora, plays Mrs. Alving; Jan Malmsjo, her Manders, was the devilish Hummel in the director's Ghost Sonata. OPENS TUESDAY, THROUGH JUNE 14, BAM Harvey Theatre, 651 Fulton Street, Brooklyn, 718-636-4100. (Feingold)

Decked out: Radiohead station themselves at the Beacon theater (see music).
photo: Tom Sheehan
Decked out: Radiohead station themselves at the Beacon theater (see music).

'THE NEW YORK CITY HIP-HOP THEATER FESTIVAL' Because life is so fresh when word becomes flesh, the crimes of rhymes are the rage on the stage. At least, they will be for these two weeks, when hip-hop takes over P.S.122 and New York Theatre Workshop (79 East 4th Street) for its fourth annual celebration and demonstration of what the new lyricism can do to change your dramatic view, with rappers, knee-slappers, and even some tappers. For the windup show, they've got Danny Hoch's Flow, and you know he ain't slow. So go. THROUGH JUNE 14, VARIOUS VENUES; Will Power in Flow PREVIEWS JUNE 12, OPENS JUNE 26, P.S.122, 150 First Avenue, 212-477-5288. (Feingold)

'THE PERSIANS' The tragedy of defeat, as felt on the home front, described by the victors for the victors. No, it's not CNN in Iraq, but one of the world's oldest surviving plays, written by Aeschylus, who was there with the Greek invaders. Ellen McLaughlin's adaptation, starring Len Cariou and Roberta Maxwell, is the latest effort of Tony Randall's National Actors Theatre. IN PREVIEWS, OPENS TUESDAY, Schimmel Center, Pace University, Spruce Street and Park Row, 212-239-6280. (Feingold)

'SAVANNAH BAY' Would a once great retired actress have much to say, in a blissful seaside villa, to the granddaughter they're meeting for the first time? You know they would in a play by Marguerite Duras (1914-1996), mapper extraordinaire of generational confrontations. Duras's duologue may get an extra charge in Les Waters's production from the lauded actress playing the grand lady: Kathleen Chalfant, fresh from her Obie-winning turn in Talking Heads. Marin Ireland, who teamed with Chalfant in last fall's Far Away, is her partner for this game of emotional tennis in the French style. IN PREVIEWS, OPENS TUESDAY, Classic Stage Company, 136 East 13th Street, 212-677-4210. (Feingold)


JAMES GLEICK The Devils had a lot of momentum going into the Stanley Cup finals; the Yankees have recently suffered bouts of inertia—such sentences, ripped screaming from the local sports pages (not really—I just made them up), are proof positive that we are all Newtonians. James Gleick's new biography of Isaac Newton traces how this son of an illiterate farmer, whose life was contained in 150 miles (and who never had a romantic relationship), made knowledge "a thing of substance"—establishing principles that we call his laws. THURSDAY AT 7, Housing Works Used Books Café, 126 Crosby Street, 212-334-3324. (De Krap)

CARTER G. WOODSON CULTURAL LITERACY PROGRAM BENEFIT This Brownsville/Bed-Stuy-based reading initiative cares about the kids in its beleaguered community—and so do some spectacular talents, who come together for this worthy benefit. Noted songwriters (including David Byrne and Sonic Youth's Kim Gordon and Thurston Moore) join everyone's favorite authors: Jonathan Franzen, Mary Gaitskill, and Colson Whitehead. MONDAY AT 7, Bowery Ballroom, 6 Delancey Street, 866-468-7619. (Park)

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