March 10, 2015

Tall and stately, the elderly woman leaned on a cane, heading down in the elevator after a matinee of Ferenc Molnar’s “Fashions for Men” at the Mint Theater. “When I was in high school, Molnar was the hottest thing going,” she told her companion. It’s been a while. The Broadway heyday of Molnar, a Hungarian playwright, stretched from the 1920s to the ’40s, when Rodgers and Hammerstein adapted “Carousel” from his drama “Liliom,” about a brutish barker at a Budapest amusement park. “Fashions for Men,” a romantic comedy that came to Broadway in 1922, the year after “Liliom,” could hardly be more different. At its center is a man, Peter Juhasz (Joe Delafield), so tenderhearted and trusting that he has nearly run himself out of business. The customers at his high-end Budapest clothing store love him, just not enough to pay their bills. A gentle husband to his wife, Adele (Annie Purcell), he has failed to notice that she’s fallen in love with their lying clerk, Oscar (John Tufts) — and given him all their savings so they can start a new life together in Berlin.