Seat Filler: NYC Theater Guide for July 2011

The Advocate’s man on the New York theater scene applauds off-Broadway tributes to Harvard’s persecuted homosexuals, bisexual blues singer Bessie Smith, Greenwich Village’s gay history, and Jodie Foster’s lispy lesbian appeal.

BY Brandon Voss

July 12 2011 6:00 AM ET

UNNATURAL ACTS X390 (MARCUS) | ADVOCATE.COM

Unnatural Acts
Inspired by the true story of Harvard’s 1920 “secret court” formed to expel homosexual students after one student’s suicide, this sharp and stylish melodrama — conceived and directed by Tony Speciale and created with Plastic Theatre members — is a triumphant memorial. Distracting theatrics aside, it’s a glossier, gutsier take on the subject than last summer’s Veritas, aided by indelibly effete turns from Nick Westrate and Max Jenkins.
Classic Stage Company, through July 24.

SILENCE! THE MUSICAL X390 (ROSEGG) | ADVOCATE.COM

Silence! The Musical
This unauthorized parody of The Silence of the Lambs stars Jenn Harris, who does a dead-on Jodie Foster as Clarice; Brent Barrett, who croons with killer charm as Dr. Lecter; Steven Bienskie as penis-tucking transsexual Buffalo Bill; and, poking fun at Ms. Foster, Deidre Goodwin as a lesbian love interest. But the snappy book by [title of show]’s Hunter Bell outshines a so-so score that tries to shock with tunes like “If I Could Smell Her Cunt.”
Theatre 80, through August 13.

THE EMPEROR'S NEW CODPIECE X390 (MICHAEL WAKEFIELD) | ADVOCATE.COM

The Emperor’s New Codpiece
Drag playwright Linda Simpson puts a campy, delightfully anachronistic spin on Hans Christian Andersen’s classic, setting the fable in medieval times at the Castle Club, a “nightspot for fops.” Directed by Theatre Askew’s Tim Cusack, the show also stars Simpson as a diet ale–drinking drag queen who aims to sabotage the go-go dancers by convincing them to don invisible codpieces, but Patrick Johnson steals the show as a horny peasant girl.
The Laurie Beechman Theatre, through July 15.

Tags: Theater

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