'AMERICAN LIVING ROOM FESTIVAL'
HERE Arts Center, 145 Sixth Avenue, 212-647-0202, here.org
July 22-August 24: The American Living Room is well into its adolescence now, offering up its 14th year of summer programming. The work is always unpredictablesometimes good, sometimes vastly less sobut it's all done in a healthy spirit of experiment. Some possible highlights: Boring (Boing!), a performance piece about self-destructive youth culture told through Nintendo and drinking games (July 17-18); Girls on the Rocks, a "multimedia Baroque spectacle exploring the sexually charged myth of the siren" (August 14); and Tulip Heavena tale about where tulips go when they die (July 31-August 1).
'FOURTH ANNUAL MIDTOWN INTERNATIONAL THEATRE FESTIVAL'
Abingdon Theatre Arts Complex, 312 West 36th Street, 212-279-4200, oobr.com
July 14-August 3: Impresario John Chatterton mounts his pre-Fringe fest, this year focusing on new musicals. His Web site notes: "We don't stuff the Festival with zany productions whose chief recommendation is a long title or one with 'sex' in it." He also especially welcomes shows with large castsso the series is a good place to break out your Crimean War tuner.
'FUSE: THE NYC CELEBRATION OF QUEER CULTURE'
HERE Arts Center, 145 Sixth Avenue, 212-647-0202, here.org
June 16-July 5: HERE and Dixon Place have combined their queer theater projects into one festival called "Fuse," which will comprise innumerable gay- and lesbian-themed events. Among them: Bang-a-Gong, a short evening of works in progress curated by Ellie Covan; Cabaret Macabre, a late-night show described as "an evening of lounge acts for a futuristic underworld"; Hybrids, a series of multimedia works; and an Erotic Puppetry Parlor curated by Obie winner Basil Twist.
GORILLA REPERTORY THEATRE
Washington Square Park, West 4th and McDougal streets
August 1-31: Though I thought last year was supposed to be Gorilla Rep's final season, they're back this summer with two outdoor shows: their traditional production of A Midsummer Night's Dream, and a new play titled Fool, by Victor Kaufold. You can find them doing it up for free in the southwest corner of Washington Square Park, Thursday through Sunday at 8 p.m. Theater you can smoke to.
'ICE FACTORY '03'
Ohio Theatre, 66 Wooster Street, 212-966-4844, sohothinktank.org
July 9-August 16: Soho Think Tank continues its fine sum-mer series, with weekends of work by Lenora Champagne, Salt Theater, adobe theater, Montreal's Sabooge Theatre, Philly's noted Lecoq ensemble Pig Iron Theater, and a run of David Greenspan's The Myopia, receiving what may be the cult piece's longest public run.
'LINCOLN CENTER FESTIVAL 2003'
Various venues, 212-875-5766, lincolncenter.org
July 1-27: Two productions provide the main theater component of this summer's Lincoln Center Festival. Israel's Itim Theatre Ensemble mounts Mythosan interpretation of Aeschylus' Oresteia with a cast of Israeli, Palestinian-Israeli, and Ethiopian-Israeli actors. Somewhat more ambitious-sounding is Deborah Warner's The Angel Project. The Medea director's piece is described as both "a physical journey and a journey of the imagination," traversing several surprise sites throughout Manhattan. (Though not, I'm guessing, one of those front tables at Elaine's, since Keith Hernandez probably hates theater.)
'LINCOLN CENTER OUT OF DOORS'
Lincoln Center Plaza, Broadway and 65th Street, 212-875-5766, lincolncenter.org
August 23-24: Fiesta de los Locos sounds like a regular day around my neighborhood, but it's actually Teatro Guirigai of Madrid's presentation of street theater "in the European tradition." As such, expect lots of busking and excellent train service.
'NEW YORK CITY HIP-HOP THEATER FESTIVAL'
P.S.122, 150 First Avenue
New York Theatre Workshop, 79 East 4th Street, 718-782-2621, hiphoptheaterfest.com
June 3-14: Danny Hoch and the folks behind the "NYC Hip-Hop Theater Festival" offer a broad palette of contempo-urban performance. Over 25 pieces, among them an opening-night show by dancer Bill "Crutchmaster" Shannon; Solo for Two, a multimedia dance-theater event from France; Angela's Mixtape, a red-diaper-baby tale about growing up with Angela Davis. BYO bling-bling.
'THE NEW YORK INTERNATIONAL FRINGE FESTIVAL'
Various venues, 212-279-4488, fringenyc.org
August 8-24: Back for its seventh year, one can now safely say that FringeNYC has become an institution (though the Present Company's decampment from Stanton Street will require a new Fringe Central). Better venues in recent years have decreased the sweat-box factor, and the success of Urinetown (and partial success of Debbie Does Dallas) has raised the festival's profile in the eyes of the larger theatergoing public. Nearly 200 shows and performances from around the world, plus lots of drinking.
'SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARK'
Delacorte Theater, Central Park, 212-539-8750, publictheater.org
June 24-August 10: For the second year in a row, Central Park's Delacorte Theater will see only one Shakespeare in the Park productionthis time Henry V, directed by Mark Wing-Davey. Expect the Bard deficit to be made up, though, by the performance of Liev Schreiber, one of New York's finest actors and winner of an Obie Award for his performance in the New York Shakespeare Festival production of Cymbeline a few summers back.
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