TTaking place in three "sets" played out on a tennis court, the play deals with the changing manners and values of the moneyed classes, and their hangers-on, from the turn of the century, through the '20s and '30s, and on to the present day. Guided by a bouncy games-mistress, we meet such luminaries as Diamond Jim Brady and Mrs. Cornelius Vanderbilt; the hardeyed, ambitious flapper Brenda; and Morgan Aspair, the beautiful, amoral and fascinating child of Hollywood in its heyday. The talk is bright, witty and often funny, but it is also revealing of the desperation and meanness which, all too often, lurk beneath the dazzling veneer of the places and people dealt with. In essence the play is concerned with the manners and values of the moneyed few, and those who jockey for position in their ranks, but, ultimately, it is America itself that is captured, defined and deftly illuminated by the playwright's resourceful and incisive imagination.
A brilliant play, presented at the Lenox (Mass.) Arts Center and then by New York's South Street Theatre, which uses the game of tennis as a metaphor to trace the evolution of upper class life in America from turn of the century courtliness; through World War I competitiveness; and on to contemporary prosperity and greed. "…it is intelligent, graceful, sometimes profound; and its language is a rare demonstration of the pleasure literacy can provide on the stage." —NY Times. "…head and shoulders above the usual, in braininess, wit, and style." —Cue Magazine. "…brilliant, literate, witty, original and steadily compelling." —Boston Globe.