Cambodian Rock Band
Closed 2h 25m
Cambodian Rock Band
84

Cambodian Rock Band NYC Reviews and Tickets

84%
(128 Reviews)
Positive
97%
Mixed
2%
Negative
1%
Members say
Absorbing, Great acting, Great singing, Ambitious, Entertaining

About the Show

This darkly funny, electric new play with music tells the story of a Khmer Rouge survivor returning to Cambodia, as his daughter prepares to prosecute one of Cambodia's most infamous war criminals.

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Member Reviews (128)

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962 Reviews | 339 Followers
75
Loud, Uneven tone, Thought-provoking, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if you'd enjoy rock music &/or intense drama abt Khmer Rouge. Historical scenes compelling. Duch is fascinating; CRB strgest when he's on.

Don't see it if you want cohesive play (tone varies wildly). Upbeat music at end seems wrong. Some wooden dialogue/acting. Still, unusual premise; ambitious

826 Reviews | 1004 Followers
82
Absorbing, Entertaining, Great acting, Great singing

See it if Really great story, performances and music. Has a little of everything, drama, history, singing. Really enjoyed it.

Don't see it if You aren't in the mood for a 2 act play. Aren't in the mood for a serious play.

912 Reviews | 378 Followers
90
Thought-provoking, Great writing, Absorbing, Great singing, Intense

See it if You like rock & roll and when it is used to help tell a story that is both deeply sensitive and emotionally disturbing. Slow build up.

Don't see it if If you want a fluffy light hearted, easy to swallow show. This takes a little work to follow and it’s a tough one to easily accept. Read more

916 Reviews | 224 Followers
69
Great acting, Quirky, Overrated, Disappointing

See it if If you want to see good acting and a 70s musical about Cambodia.

Don't see it if Overrated. Music drowns out at times and story is convoluted.

699 Reviews | 214 Followers
88
Epic, Meaningful, Great music, Disturbing, Intense

See it if Powerful combo of rock music, Khmer Rouge prison survival, and American daughter seeking her roots. Creative & transporting.

Don't see it if You don't like hard rock. You want a fully realistic story. You are uninterested in historical themes. Prison torture. Read more

605 Reviews | 267 Followers
86
Amazing combo of ‘70s cambodian rock music & tale of murderous cambodian prison commandant

See it if acutely shows banality of evil in Khmer Rouge mass killings; fine actor-musicians; Cambodian rock/Dylan fill scenes w emotion

Don't see it if broad & jokey; contrived plot; still works as entertaining vehicle 2 bring alive chilling historical chpt Read more

567 Reviews | 147 Followers
92
Gritty, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting, Inventive

See it if Gritty war crimes musical. Headstrong lawyer clashes with narrator and her pa over secrets well kept. "I raised you not to care." Dual-roles

Don't see it if Class-based genocide.Tribunal meeting.Pol Pot.Western-style rock band.Unreliable narrator:"It is my story & I can tell you anything I want." Read more

593 Reviews | 221 Followers
76
Disappointing, Cliched, Slow, Resonant, Great singing

See it if You’d be fascinated by a fictional account involving the Khmer Rouge, especially one that throws in some good rock songs.

Don't see it if You feel unsatisfied when a play — with sub-par acting — is told in a wonky, mish-mash style that doesn’t come together.

Critic Reviews (15)

The New York Times
February 24th, 2020

"Partying With the Khmer Rouge in ‘Cambodian Rock Band’: Lauren Yee’s ambitious, tonally mixed play uses bait-and-switch tactics to approach the dark heart of a genocidal regime."
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Time Out New York
February 28th, 2020

3/5 Stars. "Directed by Chay Yew, 'Cambodian Rock Band' doesn't quite hang together as a whole: It relies too much on contrivance and exposition, especially in the modern parts. But there's something both touching and rousing about the way it honors the lost beat of Cambodia's past. It's an act of defibrillation."
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New York Magazine / Vulture
February 24th, 2020

"Men to Watch in 'Cambodian Rock Band', 'Blues for an Alabama Sky,' and 'The Headlands'"
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The Hollywood Reporter
February 24th, 2020

"One of the most widely produced new American plays of the current season, Lauren Yee's plugged-in confrontation with genocidal history takes its New York bow in Chay Yew's electric production."
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Variety
February 25th, 2020

"Lauren Yee’s play draws on the music of Dengue Fever to track the fate of a fictional Cambodian band that ran afoul of the Khmer Rouge."
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AM New York
February 27th, 2020

"‘Cambodian Rock Band’ is vibrant, moving, and overstuffed"
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Theatermania
February 24th, 2020

"Lauren Yee's Fabulous 'Cambodian Rock Band' Is the First Great Play of 2020: Yee's award-winning drama comes to the Pershing Square Signature Center."
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Lighting & Sound America
March 2nd, 2020

"'Cambodian Rock Band' is notable for its confident, if shocking, trajectory, from a wisecracking family drama with kicky musical interludes to a struggle for survival under the most pitiless of conditions."
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