Barefoot in the Park

This tale of newlyweds Paul and Corie Bratter, a young couple trying to make it in the Big Apple, takes place entirely in their fifth-floor walk-up apartment, a situation that author Neil Simon evidently found funny enough to warrant a whole act devoted to staircase jokes. The Village Theatre’s stunning set design, then, causes an unnecessary tension with the cast’s constant derogatory quips about the living space. Plot progression primarily revolves around Corie, who, in lieu of employment, invents reasons to feel incompatible with her new husband. To diversify the range of possible calamities, Corie also connives to fix her mother up with Victor Velasco, the eccentric, possibly foreign, bachelor living in her building’s attic. This being a '60s romantic comedy, all the Bratters' problems (except the lack of an elevator) are neatly and humorously resolved in the last few minutes, conveniently ignoring previous character development. Noteworthy performances include John X. Deveney's Telephone Repair Man. As Paul, MJ Sieber is hilarious and redeems much in this light, dated play. VIRGINIA ZECH 8 p.m. Wed.-Sat., 2 p.m. Sun.; also some Sat. matinees and Sun. & Tues. evenings. See Web site for complete schedule. Ends March 2.

Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: Jan. 23. Continues through March 2, 2008

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