Seat Filler: NYC Theater Guide for August 2009

Somebody call 911! The Advocate 's queen on the New York theater scene is burning up the dance floor with Maksim Chmerkovskiy, crafty cheerleaders, and lots of naked boys.




Speaking of burning sensations, the new Broadway season officially began with the August 2 opening of Burn the Floor at the Longacre Theatre. Made up of a live band, a fog machine, a disco ball, a pair of vocalists, and 10 dancing couples from various countries around the world, this evening of competitive ballroom dance (or "dancesport") was choreographed by out Aussie Jason Gilkison and conceived as a special performance for Elton John's 50th birthday celebration in 1997.

Maksim Chmerkovskiy xlrg (fair use) | ADVOCATE.COM Considering its queer genesis, it's a shame there isn't at least one steamy same-sex samba, but I suppose a waltz set to "After All (Love Theme From Chances Are )" is close enough. Crowds craving eye candy of both sexes won't go hungry here, and those sitting in the front rows may even feel beads of sweat flinging off the male dancers' ripped abs, strong shoulders, and impossibly toned legs as they spin, lunge, thrust ... What was I talking about? Oh, right. Dancing.

If you're already suffering from So You Think You Can Dance withdrawal, you can feel the Burn until October 18. Catch it by August 16 and ogle Dancing With the Stars darlings Karina Smirnoff and the oft-shirtless Maksim Chmerkovskiy (pictured left).

For next month's column I'll recount my brave attempt to see as many gay-themed shows in the 13th annual Fringe Festival as humanly possible during the last two weeks of August. Sort of like Julie Powell's Julie/Julia Project, only with fewer carbs and zero chance of a feature film adaptation starring Meryl Streep.

Tags: Theater