Off-Broadway offerings range from sadly tragic to mildly amusing
'We Won't Pay! We Won't Pay!' Comedy by Dario Fo. Translated and directed by R. G. Davis. The rough-and-tumble comedy hit at the Chelsea Theater Center mingles elements of traditional Italian farce, vaudeville, and social propaganda."We Won't Pay! We Won't Pay!" introduces Dario Fo, a popular but controversial Marxist playwright, to New York with a caperish tale about two Milanese housewives who join a protest at a neighborhood supermarket. The women help force a price rollback, do a little looting on the side, and then seek to conceal the loot under their coats -- attributing their expanded girth to pregnancy. Meanwhile, the women's husbands are getting themselves into various scrapes and brushes with the law.
Apart from Mr. Fo's catchall theatrical approach, 'We Won't Pay! We Won't Pay" resembles old-fashioned agitprop entertainment. The shenanigans are interrupted from time to time for diatribes against the bosses and the capitalist "System" as the two Communist couples honor the author's allied commitments to farce and political dogma. The Italianate performance was staged by tra nslator R. G. Davis.