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New York Spotlight: July 2009

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Karina Smirnoff guest stars in Burn the Floor
The 2009-2010 Broadway season kicks off with a limited engagement of the internationally touring dance show, Burn the Floor (Longacre Theatre, August 2-October 18), created, directed, and choreographed by Jason Gilkison, and offering a sensuous blend of Latin and Ballroom dance. Dancing With the Stars' Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Karina Smirnoff will guest star during the first three weeks of the run.

Off-Broadway, the new musical Vanities receives its New York premiere at Second Stage, July 2-August 9. Based on the 1976 comedy by Jack Heifner, the work features an adaptation by Heifner and David Kirshenbaum, direction by Judith Ivey, and cast members Lauren Kennedy, Sarah Stiles, and Anneliese van der Pol as three friends who we follow from the turbulent 1960s through the late '80s. Meanwhile Second Stage's uptown series at the McGinn/Cazale debuts Lila Rose Kaplan's Wildflower, about a woman and her troubled son looking to escape their past.

Buck Henry and Holland Taylor lead the cast of Mother (Wild Project, July 8-August 1), set in an upscale resort in West Virginia where an eccentric family gathers for their annual New Year's holiday. Daniel Talbott's Slipping (Rattlestick Theatre, July 28-August 15) is a gay love story set in an Iowa high school. Lucy Thurber's Monstrosity (Connelly Theatre, July 9-19) promises a disturbing retelling of the hero's tale with a girl as the hero and an unheroic ending. The three-and-a-half-hour epic features a large cast, including J.D. Goldblatt, Cristin Milioti, and Samantha Soule. The 2009 Lincoln Center Festival (July 7-26) features a total of 56 performances by artists and ensembles from 14 countries. Theatrical highlights include two works at the Park Avenue Armory: Ariane Mnouchkine and Le Theatre du Soleil's production of Les Ephemeres (July 7-19); and the Chekhov International Theatre Festival's production of Boris Godunov (July 22-26), performed in Russian with English supertitles, directed by Declan Donnellan, and designed by Nick Ormerod.

PTP/NYC, formerly known as The Potomac Theatre Project, will present the U.S. premiere of Howard Barker's The Europeans and a revival of Neal Bell's Therese Raquin in rotating repertory at The Atlantic Stage 2, June 30-July 26. John Rando directs Theatreworks USA's free production of the musical Click, Clack, Moo (Lucille Lortel Theatre, July 21-August 22), based on the children's book by Doreen Cronin and Betsy Lewin. Nilo Cruz's A Bicycle Country (Lion Theatre, July 3-25) receives its New York premiere, telling the tale of three Cubans, disillusioned with a crumbling revolution, who risk all on a raft rocked by waves of hope and desperation. Daniel Roberts' Haunted House (Irish Arts Center, July 9-August 8) involves a couple of San Francisco tech geeks who travel to the Jersey shore to interview the Dunns, who operate a past-its-prime fun house.

The Off-Off-Broadway summer festival season continues with the Midtown International Theatre Festival (various locations, July 13-August 2); Dixon Place's annual HOT! Festival (July 1-August 1), featuring LGBT-themed works; the Fresh Fruit Festival (Hudson Guild Theatre, July 14-26), with even more queer works; the Summer Play Festival (Public Theater, July 7-August 2), showcasing original new plays and musicals by emerging writers; the International Cringe Fest (Producers Club, July 20-August 9) of bad plays and musicals; and the Soho Think Tank's Ice Factory Festival (Ohio Theatre, July 8-August 15) which includes a new piece by International Wow entitled Reconstruction and David Greenspan starring in Babes in Toyland.

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