Monday, August 3, 2009 at 11am (Broadway Time)

REVIEW: “Hot Air” by Rogue Zentradi

It’s nice getting asked to see shows before they go to Edinburgh: you get the drop on the Scotsman critic in finding a gem or a disaster.Sadly, Ten Pence Short’s new play Hot Air is quit…

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Monday, August 3, 2009 at 9am (Broadway Time)

REVISIT: Hans Teeuwen by Rogue Zentradi

I first came into contact with Hans Teeuwen last year when he played at Battersea Arts Centre following his Edinburgh run and in advance of a Dutch TV taping at the Leicester Square Theatre.…

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NOTES: Nun the Wiser by Rogue Zentradi

(Another short Edinburgh preview review)Triona Adams was a high price hobnobbing theatrical agent, booking clients into the National and attending premieres and power lunches, but after a we…

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NOTES: Sammy J & The Forest of Dreams by Rogue Zentradi

(A Scotsman-length review as this was an Edinburgh preview)An adult musical wherein a character in the dumps learns a lesson with puppets. Yeah, Avenue Q did it first and does it more hones…

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Monday, August 3, 2009 at midnight (Broadway Time)

The 2009 Broadway University Entrance Exam

The subject is lines and lyrics that use the names of our 50 states. I've managed to find one for each question without ever repeating a musical.

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In the Wings, by Rachel Lee Harris

Casting news about Little House on the Prairie, the Musical at the Paper Mill Playhouse and the New Group's Starry Messenger.

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Museum at Ford's Theater tells stories behind the Lincoln assassination, by Roger Rappaport

Today more than a million visitors a year come to what is perhaps the most visited assassination site in the world and to the small room across the street where the spirit of Abraham Lincoln…

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Today in Theatre History

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Shaking, Rattling and Shimmying, Under a Broadway Disco Ball, by Charles Isherwood

The good news about this ballroom dancing extravaganza is that it is every bit as flashy and tacky as you would expect. Do I need to add that this is also the bad news?

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Rhythm and Shoes, by Elisabeth Vincentelli

Burn the Floor consists of a breathless, plotless succession of ballroom routines. That's it, and it's either a lot or not very much, depending on your love for this type of dancing.

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Talent to Burn, by Joe Dziemianowicz

With its zero percent body fat and four-alarm sizzle, "Burn the Floor" is the stage equivalent of a fast, frisky beach read. With legs. Twenty pulsating pairs.

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Reviewed by Linda Winer

When the dance cannot turn a full evening into more than a series of strenuous effects, director-choreographer Jason Gilkison switches the lights from green to purple. When all else fails, w…

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Burn the Floor brings ballroom dancing to B'way, by Michael Kuchwara

Despite the overt sexiness, there's something bland about the evening, a generic eroticism that needs a dose of quirkiness during a surprisingly monotonous tour through the history of ballro…

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Reviewed by David Rooney

While ballroom blitz Burn the Floor has been touring internationally for 10 years, its arrival on Broadway clearly aims to cash in on the resurgent popularity of dance on television reality shows. But if you're going to invade the turf of Bob Fosse, Jerome Robbins and Michael Bennett, you need to bring something beyond adrenaline and aggressive sizzle. Something like grace, style or wit. While there's only about 15 ounces of collective body fat onstage, there's also about 15 ounces of imagination.

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Reviewed by Brian Scott Lipton

Guest stars Karina Smirnoff and Maksim Chmerkovskiy provide most of the heat in this surprisingly tepid dance show.

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Reviewed by Simon Saltzman

Unless you are missing a chromosome or two, you should find Burn the Floor an invigorating and exhilarating entertainment. It is certainly the sexiest show on Broadway.

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Reviewed by Oscar E. Moore

It pulsates. It seduces. It is rock solid, pure entertainment.

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Reviewed by Charles McNulty

If you can overlook the often generic R&B elevator music of Motown writing legends Brian Holland, Lamont Dozier, and Eddie Holland, the cut-and-pasted and cursorily reimagined book by Rupert…

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First Wives is a 2nd-act dazzler, by James Herbert

The First Wives Club kicks off with more fits and starts than a dithering bridezilla in a dress shop. But that first half, when we meet the wives and their woes, is just a setup for the second, when they actually go into action. That's when First Wives and its new songs by the incomparable Motown team Holland/Dozier/Holland step up with a pizazz that befits a (potentially) Broadway-bound show.

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Reviewed by Rob Stevens

The new musical adaptation of the hit film about three scorned wives is a true crowd-pleaser, but would benefit from a stronger book and score.

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Rush & Molloy

Broadway's hit musical "Rock of Ages" could be in jeopardy now that former "American Idol" finalist Constantine Maroulis is feeling underappreciated.

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Does Universal believe in 'Jesus'? By Steven Zeitchik

The studio and producer Marc Platt are in active development on a remake of "Jesus Christ Superstar."

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35 years of Broadway, close to home By Peter D. Kramer

Thirty-five years ago this summer, Bob Funking and Bill Stutler, two former ad men, brought dinner theater to an office park in Elmsford.

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Warning Signs Before the Wreck By KARIN LIPSON

In the long-archived "The Day on Which a Man Dies," Tennessee Williams explores the final moments in the life of an artist he identified with.

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Centuries come and gone, and he's still hot By Sam Allis

William Shakespeare is the American summer phenom. You can't get away from the guy.

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Why some of the best theatre is all foreign to me by Andrew Haydon

You don't have to understand the language a play is performed in to be moved by the visual and emotional spectacle of theatre

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B.D. Wong's pursuit of 'Herringbone' By Karen Wada

The actor has long been drawn to the challenging play and its bizarre developments. He is performing it at La Jolla Playhouse.

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Are there too many arts-related studies? And what if there are? By Leonard Jacobs

How are the arts debased or devalued by studies noticably skewed toward a particular viewpoint?

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Jude Law and the Law -- Well, Factoids -- of the Hamlets By Leonard Jacobs

Only the most recent Hamlet on Broadway, that of Ralph Fiennes, won a Tony for the actor essaying the title character.

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5 Questions I've Never Been Asked: Nick Brennan and Luke Jones By Leonard Jacobs

Members of the creative team behind the twice-extended Thank You For Being a Friend talk about parody laws and Estelle Getty's hemorrhoids.

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From the Blogroll XVII: Enraging Engagement or Engaging Enrangement? By Leonard Jacobs

A selection of selections selectively selected from The Clyde Fitch Report blogroll, with commentary.

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Quick Q&A: FringeNYC #4 by Patrick Lee

Three playwrights whose dramas will be seen at this year's Fringe Festival

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'Chaperone' a valentine to show business By BOB CURTRIGHT

A vintage musical comes to life in the fond spoof.

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Reunion and revival in Williamstown By Jeffrey Borak

'Torchbearers' reunites longtime WTF actors in a 1920's farce about a theater company trying to put on a show

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SHELF LIFE: Playbill Staffers Pick Their Favorite Books

This month's column offers a change of pace from the usual roundup of new publications, as we share some of our staff's all-time favorite books about this business we call show.

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Cocktails for 2,000: Mixing Drinks for the Main Stem

It's not just an Old-Fashioned, please, but Cole Porter would be happy. Specialty cocktails inspired by plays and musicals are enlivening lobbies of Broadway's not-for-profit theatres.

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Making his play for the stage BY BILL ERVOLINO

More than 80 singers and dancers turned out in Fair Lawn last month to audition for the upcoming Old Library Theater production of "Rent," the gritty smash musical that centers on seven impo…

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'Burn the Floor': Not your grandmother's cha-cha By Patrick Pacheco

The show continues Australian choreographer Jason Gilkison's family tradition of ballroom dance, sexing it up for Broadway.

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Burn, Baby, Burn! By: Joseph Marzullo; Text by Brian Scott Lipton

Susan Lucci, Samantha Harris, Carrie Ann Inaba, Tony Roberts, Ricky Paull Goldin, David Fumero, Melissa Gallo, Chrishell Stause, and Saundra Santiago celebrate the Broadway opening of Burn the Floor.

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Burn the Floor - Reviewed by LISA JO SAGOLLA

This dazzling Latin and ballroom dance revue is brilliantly performed by a cast of international dancesport champions.

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Burn the Floor
Review by Matthew Murray

This oversexed and underwhelming - if surface-level-enjoyable - show that just opened at the Longacre has been so glamoured and glitzed à la Dancing with the Stars that it even incorporates two of that ABC megahit's most sinewy fixtures: its unquestionably gifted and blindingly sculpted (and incidentally engaged) champion celebrity partners, Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Karina Smirnoff.

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Who's on 'First'? By James Hebert

Old Globe has lined up an all-star team for a musical based on 'First Wives Club,' including pop giants Holland/Dozier/Holland

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Payback can be brutal By Welton Jones

Despite some really slick production values and a generally tight and perky staging by Francesca Zambello, this is still just another one of those six-finales-in-search-of-a-plot shows.

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A Guy and His Dolls By Brandon Voss

Don't hate Broadway vet Richard Jay-Alexander for thinking Jessica Biel has the chops to pull off Guys and Dolls in concert. After all, he considers Barbra, Bette and Bernadette close personal and professional friends.

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For young dancers Oskar Rodriguez and Angelo Rivera, landing in an all-star ensemble's revival of an iconic musical has given them further inspiration to pursue their dreams.

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Culture Monster: Theater review: 'Guys and Dolls in Concert' at the Hollywood Bowl by Charles McNulty

"Guys and Dolls," a Broadway musical set in Times Square, filled with Hell's Kitchen riff-raff and their would-be reformers and subtitled "A Musical Fable of Broadway, seemed right at home a…

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Guys and Dolls

Last weekend, Kevin Stites and the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra did right by the evergreen Frank Loesser score for a pleasant night out, in the face of grievous miscasting and a total absence of…

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'Sex with Strangers' should be next breakout Chicago play by Chris Jones

Laura Eason's smart and riveting "Sex with Strangers," the must-see show at the Steppenwolf Theatre Company's First Look Repertory of New Work and, I'll bet, the next red hot Chicago play, i…

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Three new dramas are off to a good start at First Look Repertory of New Work BY HEDY WEISS

New works target real life in annual Steppenwolf showcase

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Want to Take the Mae West Walk? By Leonard Jacobs

Go up and take the tour sometime -- August 16.

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