Fuzzy r5
New York | 1h 20m | Already closed


From 2 critic and 36 member reviews
Members say: Funny, Entertaining, Clever, Delightful, Hilarious

About the show

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. More…

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.

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

Theater Pizzazz

"The stylized telling involves a great deal of repetition, mobile facial expressions, sound effects and much exaggeration—all delightfully intimate and low-keyed...'Rakugo' may be a bit coy and small-scale in its storytelling for Americans, although it is difficult to judge by this one, singularly unconventional tale. It lacks the colorful staging of other Japanese classical theater forms, but has an intimacy and a feeling of improvisation that makes it easy to love." Full Review

Funny, Clever, Must see, Entertaining, Great staging

See it if You can understand ENGLISH and JAPANESE or know both American and Japanese culture, then you can enjoy perfectly. I loved the show a lot.

Don't see it if You like gossipy, black joke, stand-up comedy. This comedy is traditional style of comic story telling. It's more sophisticated show.

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

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

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

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

Funny, Clever, Delightful

See it if light hearted comic story telling

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

Funny, Clever, Delightful, Enchanting, Entertaining

See it if you have children to take to the family show. The families loved it, especially the Japanese families.

Don't see it if don't see the afternoon performance for families - if you want to see an adult show. See the evening performance for adults

Also I made the mistake of seeing the afternoon play. It was cute and I was... Read more Read less

Funny, Entertaining

See it if if you want an entertaining evening with a story teller trained in the Japanese tradition told with mastery and skill

Don't see it if you aren't interested in Japanese culture, solar actor

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

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.

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

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

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

Ambitious, Quirky, Energetic, Genuine, Mildly entertaining

See it if you'd enjoy a uniquely different experience. It's like stand-up (but kneeling). Well-meaning, genuine, culturally respectful, high-energy.

Don't see it if you want to see a str8 play. We mistakenly saw a Saturday "family" matinee, w/contents for more of a kids-filled audience. Mildly humorous.

Also Kudos to Katsura Sunshine.... Read more Read less

Pleasant, Somewhat dull, Appealing storyteller, Unvaried, A bit bland

See it if you like low key humor, a pleasant and appealing story teller and comedy that obvious and not "edgy."

Don't see it if you favor humor that is fast, timely, relevant, political, sexual, satiric or irascible.

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

Confusing, Disappointing, Cliched

See it if If you know what RAKUGO means

Don't see it if You want a show that is more than a gussied up lecture

Funny, Enchanting, Masterful, Hilarious, Entertaining

See it if You are interested in the Japanese language, Japanese culture.

Don't see it if You don't like fun, intelligent and masterful comedy.

Funny, Absorbing, Delightful, Refreshing, Hilarious

See it if you love a wholesome good night of easy laughter

Don't see it if n/a

Funny, Clever, Delightful, Enchanting, Entertaining

See it if You enjoy an extremely funny show with a very engaging entertainer and you want to experience something unusual in theatre.

Don't see it if You are a sourpuss and don't like to laugh.

Funny, Clever, Delightful, Enchanting, Hilarious

See it if If you are interested in Japanese culture. If you are not familiar with Japan, you will still enjoy this and won’t be able to stop laughing!

Don't see it if your preference is for sarcasm or very dark humour. It’s very cheerful and has stories containing great humour.

Also I am Japanese and I never heard or saw RAKUGO before.... Read more Read less

Funny, Absorbing, Masterful, Riveting, Entertaining

See it if You want to experience a slice of culture rarely seen stateside.

Don't see it if You expect over the top, bombastic production. You don't like thinking too much.

Also I never thought I would actually get to see rakugo in person, much les... Read more Read less

Funny, Delightful, Great acting, Intelligent, Hilarious

See it if Love to laugh, like one-man shows, love Japan, want to take a trip to another world, like learning about other cultures while laughing...

Don't see it if You don't like learning a bit of Japanese while watching a show

Also Many people have fixed images of Japan - kimono, kabuki, sushi, noh th... Read more Read less

Funny, Great acting, Masterful, Hilarious, Entertaining

See it if you are interested in Japanese culture, rakugo or Japanese-English bilingual.

Don't see it if you are not interested Japanese culture.

Also I enjoyed his rakugo very much. I took off just 1 point because he mis... Read more Read less

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

Cast & Creatives (4)