he salad bar of summer theater in New York offered two classical adaptations in outdoor settings and one modernist play indoors but with brilliantly estival settings. The classics were queerly and imperfectly staged; the recent play got a perfect production. Such is the capricious justice of art.

En Garde Arts is a seven-year-old company given to “site-specific” plays, generally written ad hoc for presentation in such locales as nursing homes. This summer, however, En Garde producer Anne Hamburger for the first time put on a play that had been done elsewhere, notably at the A.R.T. in Cambridge, where too it was directed by Tina Landau. The play is called “Orestes, written by Charles L. Mee, Jr.,” although it is in fact a cartoon version of Euripides’ masterpiece Orestes. This little-known play, from Euripides’ dark and bitter late years, is a fierce and...

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