If this is really for anything that doesn't fit elsewhere: I saw two shows recently in New York, one delightful, the other unforgettable.

A week ago, the musical Where's Charley? as part of the musicals-in-staged-concert series Encores! Based on the venerable farce Charley's Aunt, Frank Loesser's first stage musical, and originally a vehicle for Ray Bolger, it is rarely done (and the film never shown). One can see Loesser finding his way in the medium (he certainly mastered it by his next try, Guys and Dolls), songs are inserted in odd spots and sometime to peripheral purpose. But they're still good songs, the comedy still works, and the performances were charmingly appropriate (Rob McClure sold his big solo "Once in Love with Amy" with a gentle charisma that marks him as a find). It was also a pleasure to see Rebecca Luker and Howard McGillin so nicely matured into the older generation of characters, beautiful voices intact.

And yesterday I saw my favorite play of the past quarter-century, Tom Stoppard's Arcadia, in a production as close to ideal as such things can get. I saw Trevor Nunn's original production 15 years ago, and David Leveaux's is its match, as the four others I've seen in the interirm were not quite (despite good individual elements). Standouts: Lia Williams as the first really satisfying Hannah I've seen, Tom Riley as the 1809 tutor Septimus, doing what I thought impossible by surpassing Billy Crudup's superb professional debut in the role back in 1995. And, happily, Billy Crudup himself, now portraying the sloppily flamboyant researcher Bernard Nightingale and doing more than I would have believed possible with him. What a really superb actor Billy Crudup is.