NY's Under the Radar festival highlights international theater

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The Independent Culture

The sixth annual Under the Radar festival brings innovative contemporary theater from international masters and emerging talent from around the world to New York for the first time January 6-17 after garnering success elsewhere.

Twenty productions from seven countries offer diverse staged performances originating in Ireland, Poland, Canada, the UK, and the US, including shows from the Martha Graham Dance Company, performance artists and multimedia presentations.

Highlights include:

- John Cassavetes' Husbands by Dangerous Ground Productions is based on Cassavetes' 1970's film about three men shaken by the death of a friend and their own middle age.

- Silver Stars, written by Seán Millar, directed by Brokentalkers (Ireland)
Featuring a chorus of gay men, Silver Stars is an eloquent song cycle based on celebrated singer/songwriter Seán Millar's interviews with gay men from Dublin to New York.

- Space Panorama created and performed by Andrew Dawson (UK)
Acclaimed British director and performer Andrew Dawson recreates a documentary of the historic Apollo 11 moon landing using only his hands and a black-draped table, taking audiences from Houston to the moon and safely back to Earth.

- Versus - In the Jungle of Cities produced by Teatr Nowy (Poland)
Directed by Radek Rychcik, this adaptation of Brecht's In the Jungle of Cities, traces a figurative wrestling match between two men, reinventing the epic clash with pop music and explosive choreography. Presented in Polish with English subtitles.

- L'Effet de Serge conceived/directed by Philippe Quesne, by Vivarium Studio (France),
On Sunday afternoons, in his living room and for a very small audience, Serge performs daily rituals, exposing the pleasure and necessity of the routines. Void of traditional themes and intrigues, it shows the sublime in the trivial.

- Chekhov Lizardbrain conceived, developed and created by Pig Iron Theatre Company (USA)
An OBIE Award-winning concoction of neuroscience and maladroit Russian melodrama. A botanist conjures a parade of unsettling and comic recollections performed in a dizzying and poignant web of memory, vaudeville, and stories.

- LA Party conceived and directed by Phil Soltanoff, written by David Barlow, Presented by HERE Arts Center (USA)
The story narrated by Barlow collides with live video with six performers producing a compelling composite human being. From Phil Soltanoff whose collaborations with France's CIE 111 produce playful meldings of theatre, visual art, dance and new cirque.

- The Devil You Know by La MaMa ETC and Ping Chong and Company (USA). Theater wizard Chong and Phantom Limb's Erik Sanko and Jessica Grindstaff join forces for a tantalizing tale of desperate deals and second chances. The classic American Faustian fable, The Devil and Daniel Webster is gleefully transformed with the help of dozens of finely-crafted marionettes, dazzling video projections, and ingenious revolving stages.

- The Wind-up Bird Chronicle directed by Stephen Earnhart. Interdisciplinary, multimedia theatrical performance based on the international bestselling novel by Haruki Murakami combining live performance and puppetry with video projections and hypnotic soundscapes.

Performed at the Public Theater (www.publictheater.org) and other venues in New York City. Most tickets are $15.