Newhouse Theater

The time is New Year's Eve, 1929. In an elegant New York brownstone on "Millionaires' Row" (West 23rd Street between 9th and 10th Avenues), Mr. and Mrs. Sam Hammer bid their last few guests farewell with a parting wish: "A better year ahead."

But, as that pivotal year begins, the shadow of the enormous London Terrace apartment complex under construction looms over their home. The shadow also portends Wall Street's impending collapse, and the growing strain upon the Hammer's marriage.

This is the setting for Richard Greenberg's THE HOUSE IN TOWN. While the early-20th-century New York City historical framework permeates his story, Mr. Greenberg has kept his play tightly focused on the Hammers' complicated marriage, and on the impact of the shy young man who enters their lives. His carefully drawn characters remind one of Edith Wharton's portraits of New York society life in an earlier age.