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Under the Radar: All over the world

Like their title suggests, the “Under The Radar Festival,” opening today at The Public Theater, showcases theatrical works that haven’t quite hit the mainstream yet.

Like their title suggests, the “Under The Radar Festival,” opening today at The Public Theater, showcases theatrical works that haven’t quite hit the mainstream yet. “This year has more international work than we’ve ever presented,” says festival producer Mark Russell. “And it really plays the whole piano in that we have things like Samuel Beckett all the way to Berlin’s “Bonanza,” which is a piece that doesn’t have any actors at all. It’s so many different artists pushing the envelope of what theater is.” And although he’s reluctant to name his favorites (Russell is quick to point out that “they’re all my children”), he was persuaded to talk to us about some of the stand-outs of this year’s fest.

Reggie Watts / Tommy Smith’s “Dutch A/V”:
“Reggie is an amazing comedian and musician and was opening for Conan on his live tour. He’s just an amazing mind,” says Russell.

UNIVERSES’ “Ameriville”
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“This group hails from the Bronx and uses spoken word, singing and hip-hop to tell a story of post-Katrina America.”

Zachary Oberzan’s “Your brother, Remember?”
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“This is a beautiful story,” says Russell. “When Zach and his brother Gator were kids, they remade action flicks in home movies. They went their separate ways — Gator went to prison and Zach ended up in theater. And this is recreations of recreations of recreations of their films.”

Nora York’s “Jump”:
“This is a meditation on celebrity, of the life of Sarah Bernhardt and the story of Tosca and many other things,” claims Russell. “Plus, it’s got an incredible cast.”

 
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