My gloom over Birdie and my moderate joy over Memphis leave me little space for the Keen Company's production of five rarely performed little plays by Thornton Wilder, Such Things Only Happen in Books (Clurman Theatre). But the plays, as small in substance as in shape, and the production, never more than modestly pleasant in quality, fit tidily in this cubbyhole. No harm in them, but nothing as gigantic in scope as Wilder's great plays, either.

Musical lifesaver: Glover (center) in  Memphis
Joan Marcus
Musical lifesaver: Glover (center) in  Memphis


By Joe DiPietro and David Bryan
Shubert Theatre
225 West 44th Street, 212-239-6200

Bye Bye Birdie
By Michael Stewart, Lee Adams, and Charles Strouse
Henry Miller's Theatre
124 West 43rd Street, 212-719-1300

Such Things Only Happen in Books
By Thornton Wilder
Clurman Theater, Theater Row
410 West 42nd Street, 212-279-4200

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