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Crisp Coward on a summer's night

Hand300 Though plenty of South Florida theaters opt for the escapist pleasures of musicals and revues in summer, Palm Beach Dramaworks has something a bit pithier in store. Noel Coward's Private Lives is the tart treat; in it, Caroline Strong and Wynn Harmon play battling, still-in-love former spouses who happen to choose the very same hotel (and side-by-side suites) for honeymoons with their subsequent mates.

Besides Strong and Harmon, Katherine Tanner and Cliff Burgess appear as the not-so-fortunate second spouses.  J. Barry Lewis directs it all.

Palm Beach Dramaworks is at 322 Banyan Blvd. in West Palm Beach.  The play begins previews tonight at 8 p.m., opens on Friday and runs through Aug. 16.  Performances are at 8 p.m. Wednesday-Saturday, 3 p.m. Wednesday, 2 p.m. Saturday-Sunday.  Tickets are $42 evenings, $40 for matinees.  Call 561-514-4042 or visit the Dramaworks web site.