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The Very Best of NYC Theater
by Mei-Mei Chin
August 12, 2010
Conatus Productions makes their NYC Fringe Festival debut with Friends of Dorothy: An Oz Cabaret playing at La MaMa Aug 16–22, “Pasties, and Glitter, and Drag, Oh My!” Follow Dorothy from Kansas to the strange and beautiful land of Bras, where she meets some memorable friends and foes, but none as fierce and fabulous as the Wicked Bitch of the West. Will Dorothy make it through the forest of glitter and fringe to the Wizard with her friends? Can she keep the Wicked Bitch of the West from getting her hands on the Ruby Red Pasties? Journey over the rainbow and down the yellow brick road with Dorothy as she discovers the true meaning of what it means to be home.

The New York Classical Theatre continues its 8th season of free performances in Central Park with Shakespeare on the Run: Much Ado About Nothing, now playing through Aug 29. Join in the fun as the New York Classical Theatre infuses its signature panoramic style of theatre that keeps the performance, actors and audiences moving throughout the park. No snoozing allowed during this entertaining production; as you watch the show, the next scene starts about 50 feet away, and the entire audience follows the actors every 10 to 15 minutes with each moving scene. The action starts at West 103rd Street and makes its way around the lake, using footbridges, trees, rocks, benches and even the audience as scenery.

The stars of the hit Bravo reality series “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” join the cast of My Big Gay Italian Wedding for a limited engagement Sep 1–4. Teresa Giudice, Ashley Holmes, Jacqueline Laurita, Caroline Manzo and Lauren Manzo will assume the roles of the Wedding Officiator, Connie Scuccifuffio, Toniann Naso, Angela Pinnunziato and Maria Pinnunziato, respectively, in the outrageous Off-Broadway comedy now playing at St. Luke’s Theatre. A portion of the proceeds raised from ticket sales for the Sep 1–4 performances and for the Sep 1 post-show party will benefit Marriage Equality New York.

Layon Gray, writer and director of the long-running Off-Broadway hit Black Angels Over Tuskegee, continues to expand African-American theatre with his latest work, All-American Girls, opening at the Actors Temple Theatre Aug 25. The drama captures an era in American history when women were called upon to keep baseball alive as the men went off to battle in World War II. A tale of racism, deceit and betrayal revolving around the coach of an all-Negro female baseball team who goes missing in 1945 Chicago.
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