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“Why Cardona felt the need to create this elaborate and totally inorganic metaphor for the fate of a Brooklyn neighborhood is anyone's guess...If the street scenes dawdle -- they are about as exciting as one of those domino games -- at least they provide some enjoyable local color…Every time the action switches to the North Pole, the possibility of ‘Bamboo in Bushwick’ as a mordant, relevant drama dies a little faster…Cardona hasn't been able turn his material into a workable drama.” Full Review
"I wanted to see 'Bamboo' because of the topic: gentrification. Unfathomably, the playwright gets all artsy with it, and 'Bamboo' winds up being a confusing, clichéd mess that doesn’t shed any new light on the subject...The first problem is that not much happens in the present-day scenes, and what does is hard to follow...Meanwhile on the 'mural-verse' side of the wall, there are two different kinds of creatures...Had the mural been seen in the present-day scenes, it might have made some sense." Full Review
“‘Bamboo in Bushwick’ addresses gentrification with honesty and absurdity, bringing to light the harsh realities and many perspectives of those living in changing neighborhoods…The piece is well structured and the effects of gentrification are magnified by the absurdity of the polar bears taking over the penguins…The piece also highlights how minorities are pushed out of their neighborhoods unlawfully.” Full Review
"'Bamboo in Bushwick' gives audiences a look at gentrification that is entertaining, educational, and honest...Cardona Jr., in a completely inspired stroke of the pen, creates another play world based upon a real mural in Bushwick...The shared discomfort of all the characters with their changing surroundings is so real, itʼs unsurprising that the writer and director based their sentiments off of interviews with Bushwick residents. Director Margineanu delivers many interesting choices." Full Review
See it if You are OK with a half English, half Spanish play with subtitles in each language that thinly paints an allegory of negative gentrification
Don't see it if You don't like allegories that don't make sense, or you think gentrification is a complex issue with both positives and negatives.
See it if You would like to see a play about gentrification and its impact. The playwright does ponder over this topic.
Don't see it if You don't want to see a confusing play although the metaphor part is pretty interesting. The whole thing is not catchy enough.
See it if Story line is not interesting enough to be engaged in it. The penguin metaphor can be condensed in 3 min and not 1/4 of the play.
Don't see it if you want a fast interesting story line.
See it if you like creative theatre that will have you debating with your friends all night.
Don't see it if Don't see it if you don't like conceptual theatre or if you don't have glasses on because there are supertitles.
See it if You've lived in a neighborhood before during and after its gentrification. Enjoy bilingual performances.
Don't see it if You hate reading supertitles. Don't like plays with social themes.
See it if 'Gentrification' is very important to you and metaphorical and oblique treatment of it resonates with you.
Don't see it if If you like straightforward dialogue and acting and are confused by strange metaphorical representations.
See it if You know some Spanish or are ok with reading subtitles . You enjoy quirky shows with a simple message.
Don't see it if Messages against gentrification doesn't interest you , bilingual shows confuse you . Quirky animal comparison are too much to bear.
See it if you're interested in a play that considers the complex dynamics at play in gentrification with a dash of not so subtle allegory.
Don't see it if you don't want to think deeply about gentrification or prefer straightforward theater.
See it if you are sick of ignoring the problem of gentrification and want to see a human side of the story. The video design elements are noteworthy
Don't see it if You can't see a show with subtitles, as about 1/3 of the play is in Spanish.