The Notorious Dr. August

Those who appreciated last year’s Oscar-nominated movie Gods and Monsters will find plenty to amuse them in the latest quirky product of Christopher Bram’s imagination, The Notorious Dr. August, a historical fantasy about a three-way love affair involving an itinerant musician, a former slave, and a prissy governess. Though the plot veers a little drunkenly, Bram’s descriptions (a violinist has ”the lean build of a bat or badly furled umbrella”) and snapshots of the various historical figures (especially Wagner at the Ring cycle premiere in Bayreuth and an amazed Freud in Coney Island’s Dreamland) are right on target. B