(Ben Brantley’s article appeared in The New York Times, 2/19; via Pam Green.)

The lyricist Lorenz Hart, a star-struck cynic on the subject of human coupling, regularly itemized the painful symptoms that accompany affairs of the heart, like “the sleepless nights, the daily fights/The quick toboggan when you reach the heights.” And as most of us can testify, love isn’t easy under the best of circumstances.

But few lovers-in-waiting (and waiting and waiting) encounter the kind of obstacles with which an assortment of knotty dramas, comedies and even musicals are blocking the path to happily bedded bliss this season. In recent months, we have encountered the problems posed to enduring love by immortality (as in the vampire-girl-meets-bullied-boy play “Let the Right One In” at St. Ann’s Warehouse in Brooklyn), mortal illness (in the wrenching two-character “Constellations”) and being part of a set of conjoined twins (in the musical “Side Show”).

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