The American Plan

The American Plan $13

Richard Greenberg

Published by Dramatists Play Service

2 Male 3 Female

It is the Catskills, in the summer of 1960

By the shore of a lake, Lili Adler, the troubled twenty-year-old daughter of a wealthy German-Jewish refugee, meets Nick Lockridge, a golden young man who looks to her as if "nothing ever happened to him"

Over the summer, Lili comes to view Nick as her savior and Nick's fondness for Lili grows; but to Eva, Lili's autocratic mother, Nick is an object of suspicion, and the romance that blossoms between him and Lili is an unfortunate condition that must be indulged before it can be obliterated

Eva knows she will find out something about Nick which will unmask his unworthiness

To find it, she patiently manipulates Nick's revelations about his past to prove him unfit for Lili

By play's end, time, past injuries, and the imperatives of history will conspire to bear out Eva's dictum that happiness exists " ... but it's for other people"

This thoughtful and mysterious play dissects a portion of upper-class American society at mid-century and finds a troubled young girl's dream of love shattered by her mother's definition of happiness


"Greenberg has created some compelling characters The dialogue is lyrical, the characters absorbing " ~ NY Daily News

"How Greenberg achieves the end is nothing less than spellbinding His characters shift and shimmer like reflections on the resort's lake" ~ Variety

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