What happens when Takarazuka, Japan's longest-running all-female theater troupe, takes on Masayuki Suo's hit movie "Shall We Dance?," which won 14 Japanese Academy Awards in 1996 and aired internationally in 16 countries?

There must have been tremendous pressure for director Naoko Koyanagi to adapt and direct "Shall We Dance?," which marks the end of the company's 99th season at the Takarazuka Grand Theater in Hyogo Prefecture and the beginning of its centennial year anniversary and new season at the Tokyo Takarazuka Theater. Despite the fact that only two years have passed since Koyanagi debuted at the Grand Theater, the Snow Troupe (Yuki gumi) has, under her control, transformed the film into a hilarious metatheatrical musical drama typical of Takarazuka style.

As is often the case with Takarazuka, "Shall We Dance?" is a unique blend of East and West, combining aspects of the original film, starring Koji Yakusho, and its 2004 American remake directed by Peter Chelsom and starring Richard Gere. While the plot is faithful to Suo's original, the rest is completely Westernized. The characters inhabit a high-tech world in contemporary America and are given English names. There are also numerous references to nostalgic Americana, including set backdrops that recall scenes from the paintings of Edward Hopper.