Ends Dec 30

Rakugo

Members say: Entertaining, Clever, Funny, Delightful, Refreshing
82
Critics
80
1 review
Members
82
17 reviews
 

Celebrated master Katsura Sunshine brings the 400-year-old Japanese art of comic storytelling to NYC, in a presentation that offers different stories according to the day.

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With a minimal set, Rakugo features a lone storyteller dressed in kimono, kneeling on a cushion, who, using only a fan and a hand towel for props, entertains the audience with a comic monologue followed by a traditional story. In Japan, Rakugo has over 800 professional storytellers. Sunshine is the first Westerner to complete the grueling 3-year apprenticeship under a Rakugo Master and receive a name in the history of the Osaka Rakugo Tradition.

 

Cast & Creatives (4)


Reviews (18)

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
80
Avg Score

80
Times Square Chronicles

“A funny, exciting performance of traditional Japanese stories. Sunshine is a bright and emphatic performer...He is a delightful storyteller...He talks very fast, which makes silent or pantomimed moments more entertaining than you’d expect...If you’re looking for a good way to laugh and forget your troubles, and also learn a few things about Japanese culture, this is the show for you.” Full Review

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews
82
Avg Score

88
Rak is not wack

See it if You enjoy standup comedy, but prefer to skip the two drink minimum. KS has audience in stitches throughout. Such a charming performer.

Don't see it if You need weightier theater with some meat on bones. Stories are very light and breezy. Walking on Sunshine music at close stroke of genius!

Also Rakugo is new to most New Yorkers, but has clearly done something righ... Read more Read less

71
Funny, Refreshing, Disappointing, Overrated

See it if you wish to see one of the more lightweight Japanese art forms with simplistic stories drawn out almost ad nauseam with little ay off.

Don't see it if if ur tastes run to serious Japanese theater traditions like Butoh, you are not a Japanese child, you know something about Japanese culture

65
Intimate setting, Broad humor, Interesting cultural sharing, Great for kids (family fare program), Sunshine is sincere and animated

See it if you have a kid in tow for Long Name, Miso Bean, Tiger...the stories were kid pleasers. I found them repetitive and only mildly humorous

Don't see it if you expect a full program of entertainment; 11/19 was 50 minutes. KS ardently tried to please; interesting exposure to Japanese comedy.

Also I wish Katsura Sunshine had talked about what drew him to Rakugo and w... Read more Read less

80
Funny, Insightful, Clever, Delightful, Entertaining

See it if You're familiar with Japanese culture. Or not; Sunshine is tremendously engaging, a skilled raconteur and the stories are universal.

Don't see it if You're looking for a play rather than experiencing a 400 year old yet totally modern Japanese entertainment and art form told by a Canadian.

Also Katsura Sunshine is blonde, Canadian, about six feet tall and the firs... Read more Read less

72
Clever, Light-hearted, Good natured with a slight edge, Warm fuzzies

See it if you want a slice of Japanese culture and helpful travel tips. Blend of folk tale humor & colorful travel anecdotes.

Don't see it if you want something heavier that sticks to your bones.

Also I’d never heard of rakugo before and saw the Traditional Stories. Expe... Read more Read less

74
Affable performer, Diverting but doesn't always land, Unique cross cultural comedy

See it if you're interested in Japanese culture, and how a Canadian adapts to its subtleties and performance traditions; you like comic storytelling

Don't see it if you're not into solo performance; you don't like being asked to mimic Japanese phrases and gestures; you prefer edgier comedy

Also Sunshine varies the selection of stories at each performance; my react... Read more Read less

75
Clever, Quirky, Entertaining, Fluffy

See it if you like storytelling and standup, you are okay with a short show (ours was only 50 minutes)

Don't see it if you don't like stories. I wish he told more stories and spent less time talking to the audience about other stuff! Altogether, enjoyable.

91
Funny, Clever, Delightful, Refreshing, Entertaining

See it if You want to see something funny and a little different. Want to learn a bit about Japanese culture and laugh and be entertained.

Don't see it if You want a serious story or a big production with music

93
Funny, Clever, Intelligent

See it if Enjoy good clean fun! Have any knowledge of Japanese culture Enjoy a high energy performer

Don't see it if Looking for serious stuff Don't want to be transported to a different place

85
Funny, Clever, Delightful

See it if light hearted comic story telling

Don't see it if you want something deep to mull over

90
Funny, Absorbing, Hilarious, Entertaining

See it if You would like to spend an evening of wholehearted laughter. You are curious about Japan and its culture.

Don't see it if You don't like comedy. You aren't open to other cultures.

Also Katsura Sunshine bridges the language barrier of a traditional Japanes... Read more Read less

85
Funny, Delightful, Masterful, Refreshing, Entertaining

See it if you want to witness a simple yet elegant artform of masterful storytelling that is hysterical and accessible to all ages

Don't see it if you to see a play with a large cast and flashy sets pieces.

98
Delightful, Must see, Hilarious, Entertaining

See it if You want to laugh, you are interested in Japan, you have been to Japan, you are Japanese

Don't see it if You don’t like solo shows, you are not interested in other cultures

Also Sunshine is the first ever Westerner to undergo the arcanely strict 3-... Read more Read less

79
During previews
Entertaining, Fascinating, Unique, You'll laugh as you learn

See it if You enjoy the art forms of other cultures, appreciate the mastery and skill of a solo performer, enjoy seeing new storytelling techniques.

Don't see it if You want lots of action. Routine's like a stand-up comedy act, while kneeling. It also feels a bit too long & is, by design, VERY repetitive

Also Katsura Sunshine is from Canada and currently the ONLY non-Japanese pe... Read more Read less

95
During previews
Funny, Ambitious, Clever, Must see, Hilarious

See it if If you like Fresh, unique comedy with no 4 letter words. Entertaining and maybe even a tiny bit educational, well worth a nights viewing

Don't see it if If you are only comfortable with big venues and big staging stay away but you will be missing a delightful night of comedy.

93
During previews
Absorbing, Ambitious, Clever, Delightful, Enchanting

See it if You want to learn about Japanese culture and be entertained. You like one man comedy shows.

Don't see it if You don’t want like stories that are comedic or repetitive. Repetition is the comedy device used in the story telling.

91
During previews
Masterful, Refreshing, Entertaining

See it if you want a cheerful, fun, entertaining evening with a masterful performer.

Don't see it if you don’t like one man shows and you don’t like learning about other cultures. Otherwise, try not to miss it.

Also I didn’t know anything about the art of Rakugo and wasn’t sure I wante... Read more Read less