Playwright John Guare writes with deep humanity, and that beauty is on full display in this revival of his "Six Degrees of Separation" on Broadway. The 1990, Pulitzer Prize-nominated play is based on a true story that had circulated around New York at the time. A con man — African American and gay — insinuates himself into the lives of wealthy, white Upper East Siders and convinces them he's friends with their absent college-age children. They give him money, a place to stay and most importantly, respect. What's interesting about the play is not the con, though those are always fascinating. Instead, Guare focuses in on the why. What would drive a clever young man to do such a thing? The answer, he says, is loneliness, and the ever-present fear that your perfect-on-the-surface life is just a few degrees away from shattering. In "Six Degrees," directed here by Trip Cullman, the young con man Paul (Corey Hawkins) most strongly connects with Ouisa (Allison Janney). She shares an apartment with her art-dealer husband Flan (John Benjamin Hickey) and yearns to know more about what her children are doing. She is drawn in because she wants to be. She's lonely and misses mothering. She's looking for meaning and to matter. In Paul, she finds someone who wants to be cared for and thought of. The cast gives top-drawer performances, especially Janney and Hawkins. Janney has the gift of comic timing, but she also has a way of searching the middle distance that softens her pointed intelligence and makes her seem a little lost. In Hawkins hands, Paul is overjoyed at his own cleverness, but beneath the surface, you see that he wants to believe he is who he says he is; that he doesn't quite believe his own stories stings him with anxiety. When the play first premiered, it was making a sharp point about race relations, in addition to skewering New York's moneyed class. Now, the idea that a rich New Yorker's discomfort with a black person means they overcompensate seems almost quaint in the era of Trump. Wouldn't they just throw him out, if they were racist? And if they're not, then, they wouldn't care. But the fact that the social satire no longer has the same bite just shows the beautiful bones of Guare's work. Because even 27 years later, it is a show that compassionately explores even the dark side of human nature. Here, Paul deceives people partly because he can; but mostly because he wants to connect.