New Victory Theater presents this family-friendly solo dance piece about the young son of a cook who dreams of becoming a dancer. More…
Created by Akram Khan, one of Britain's most celebrated choreographers, this autobiographical work uses contemporary dance, humorous text, and an evocative score to create a visually compelling, cross-cultural story about the struggle of being "other." At turns intimate and epic, 'Chotto Desh' celebrates the resilience of the human spirit in the modern world.
"I found the solo dancer to be both commanding in his presence and convincing in his portrayal...The show itself was fantastic...'Chotto Desh' has some humorous scenes, some dramatic scenes, relatable dialogue, and a time-skipping, unique arc leading to both a satisfying conclusion and story moral...'Chotto Desh' is entertainment that will hold your attention, while making you think, smile, and even laugh!" Full Review
"Mr. Ricchini skillfully filled the New Victory stage with his dancing and acting...To a colorful score and a moving narration told in the voices of Mr. Khan, his grandmother and his father, Mr. Khan’s choreography first took his stand-in to a very noisy, smelly Bangladesh...In just under an hour, a very satisfying journey enfolds on the New Victory stage, flavored with just enough bittersweet emotions to keep it from becoming the usual, cloying kiddy story." Full Review
"It’s smaller in the sense that it’s an adaptation for children, but that doesn’t mean it’s inferior. If anything, this adaptation is an improvement...What were failures of subtlety in a work for adults largely become virtues of clarity in a piece for children. And what Ms. Buckmaster has preserved — what must have prompted the adaptation — is the sense of wonder, elicited mainly through a beguiling mix of dance and mime." Full Review
"Poignant and funny, as well as universal in our diverse contemporary society, but its originality lies in the manner in which that story is portrayed. It employs enchanting animations...Some of the solo dances are a bit long, and do not hold the viewer’s attention as forcefully...Director Sue Buckmaster certainly cut down on the length of the original production, and focuses on some of Khan’s earlier experiences to make it more accessible to a younger audience." Full Review
for a previous production "With a Filipino mother and Bangladeshi father, yet influenced by dance routines from America, Khan begins to put all the pieces together and create his own style. All of this is conveyed through a mixture of choreography, spoken text and animation, cleverly re-shaped by director Sue Buckmaster...The animation scene, inspired by an old myth, is utterly captivating, and a sequence about conflict, beautifully scored by composer Jocelyn Pook, is deeply moving. An absolute triumph." Full Review
for a previous production "The perfect blend of dance, clever animation and simple storytelling set to the beat of an original soundtrack...There is such fluidity with the whole performance which also aids little ones understanding and there is a perfect scattering of humour...'Chotto Desh' is the perfect mix of storytelling and dance, loaded with innocence and affection, making it fitting for young minds...Thrilling, poignant and brilliant." Full Review
for a previous production "Here is a bona fide great piece of dance, clearly within the expectations of its dance audience with resonances that go deep beneath its surface moves – yet as a piece of dance for children and their families it allows the festival to explicitly programme for that audience...The storytelling is clear and energetic...Fun and spontaneity are sprinkled across the show. But all the while there is acknowledgment of the deeper element at work, in the complex bonds between father and son." Full Review
for a previous production "This production brings together dance, storytelling, projection and music to create a magical tale of discovery, heritage and identity. The lush visuals and score provide a backdrop for the athletic and precise choreography in a fusion of the classical Kathak and modern dance techniques. Superbly executed, this is a fantastic introduction to the magic of theatre and dance and, even when the narrative was less obvious, the younger members of the audience remained entranced." Full Review
for a previous production "An autobiographical memoir fashioned out of choreographer Akram Khan’s own childhood with an honesty that is unvarnished, affecting and thoroughly engaging...The whole piece is imaginatively designed and staged, Khan’s movement vocabulary, with its bravura Kathak spins and springing footwork is thrillingly realized by Alamanos to beguiling music by Jocelyn Pook. A delight for adults and children alike." Full Review
for a previous production "Using a mixture of styles and storytelling, Khan demystifies the art of dance, and at the same time provides a rich tapestried picture of the many tangled influences that come together to make up an artist...Themes of the conflict between parental ideals and childhood freedom float along in the background, never intruding on the simplicity of the story but there as another layer...A bewitching dance-theatre tale of a young man’s dreams and memories from Britain to Bangladesh." Full Review
for a previous production "Re-created with Theatre-Rites in a version aimed at children and their families, 'Chotto Desh’ takes on a more magical quality, full of fun, discovery and imagination...This is a perfect introduction to dance for kids. A chance to see quality work by a world-class company, Chotto Desh is short and playful, yet serious in intent. It is wonderfully performed by Alamanos, and has a spell-binding effect on the audience as each wonderful new chapter enfolds." Full Review
for a previous production "A charming, witty and dynamic one-man show that explores Khan's childhood and origins...Alamanos executes 'Chotto Desh's' choreography—Khan's signature blend of contemporary and traditional Indian kathak—to perfection...Its fusion of dance, music, comedy and magical effects make 'Chotto Desh' a unique and memorable family show—and one that will hopefully inspire the next generation of dancers." Full Review
See it if You want to experience a wonderful theatrical hour. You love exquisite dance, music, creativity, gorgeous animation, storytelling. Just go.
Don't see it if You want straightforward narrative, not willing to venture into fantasy, don't like solo pieces, aren't a fan of culturally-infused dance.
See it if you'd enjoy a coming-of-age tale about the son of immigrants, grappling with his identity. Uniquely expressed through modern dance.
Don't see it if you *really* hate dance. I'm not a dance person but I loved it! You want something hard-hitting. This is a family show and quite gentle.
See it if you want to see exquisite dance tell a deep and touching story throgh a mix of magical characters, lighting, music, and sound effects.
Don't see it if you don't modern story telling through dance
See it if you'd love an hour-long theater about cultural differences and parent-child relationships expressed in the form of dance and amazing visuals
Don't see it if you want more dialogue-heavy shows
See it if you want to be visually entertained and awed by an amazing physical spectacle, coupled with a sweet if not deep story.
Don't see it if you are looking for new ideas--the tropes here are fairly well-worn but presented in an utterly unique and dynamic way.
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