Already closed | 1h 40m | West Village

Sakina’s Restaurant

From 56 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Entertaining, Clever, Intelligent, Funny

About the show

Actor, writer, and former correspondent for "The Daily Show" Aasif Mandvi  brings his vibrant, comic, and heartwarming one-man show back to the New York stage 20 years after its Obie-winning debut.


"Sakina’s Restaurant" centers on an Indian immigrant who comes to New York to work at a restaurant and live the American dream. 

1h 40m | Already closed | Minetta Lane Theatre (West Village)

Member Reviews (56)


Great acting, Entertaining, Clever, Intelligent, Funny
Avg Score

Disappointing, Slow, Cliched, Insipid

See it if you're a fan of Mandvi or stand up slow stand up comedy.

Don't see it if you want to see something with a plot and not just comedy sketches. Zzzzzzzzz

Also This was an 85 min snoozer. Indubitably Mandvi does a great acting job... Read more Read less

Disappointing, Slow, Boring

See it if You are a fan of Mandvi and 1 person shows.

Don't see it if You want a story w/ a beginning middle & end. This is small snippets of different characters lives that not amount to a full story.

Also I enjoy 1 person shows but this format for this show did not work for ... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Great acting, Great writing, Relevant, Thought-provoking

See it if Revival of an Indian-Immigrant's pursuit of the America he wants to be welcoming. Cheering for him, Mandvi assumes multiple roles. Topical.

Don't see it if Brief solo show. Dialects. Switched gender roles are cringey.

Great acting, Great writing, Riveting, Entertaining, Funny

See it if You want to see a magnificent performance in a one man multi character/gender play.

Don't see it if You’re dead set against one man shows

Funny, Clever, Ambitious

See it if you like one man shows with lots of characters depicted in a heartwarming slice of Indian-American life.

Don't see it if you don't like one actor playing lots of parts.

Disappointing, Uneven, Slow, Stale, One-person show

See it if You like Mandvi or one person, many role shows. It was written at a better time, but never caught on for me.

Don't see it if You want new insights into the immigrant experience.

Also I really wanted to like this, and adore good storytelling. But the per... Read more Read less

Well staged, Well performed, Entertaining, Ambitious, Falls short of potential

See it if you like immigrant stories and/or one person shows. Mandvi adeptly morphs into and embodies the different characters. Good transitions.

Don't see it if you aren't interested in the story of an immigrant community. Also, see below.

Also Gratuitous and unnecessary use of the r word (retarded) took me out of... Read more Read less

Absorbing, Great staging, Great acting, Funny, Resonant

See it if You enjoy one-man shows. Want to support POC theatre that examines the immigrant experience in the US.

Don't see it if You dislike one-man shows. Particularly ones wherein the actor, when portraying women, tends to create caricatures mores than characters.

Also In Britain, you never get away from the fact that you're a foreigner. ... Read more Read less

Slow, Great acting, Entertaining, Relevant, Resonant

See it if you enjoy solo works with an enjoyable mix of humor, drama & pathos, on immigrant topics; you're a fan of the multitalented Aasif Mandvi.

Don't see it if you need a much faster pace and prefer an ensemble cast & formal sets/props. Some sketches seemed to go on longer than needed ...

Intelligent, Great acting, Entertaining, Thought-provoking, Resonant

See it if you want an inside glimpse into the lives of Indian immigrants as told by Aasif Mandvi as he transforms from one character into the next.

Don't see it if you don't care for one-person shows, prefer to have a plot rather than short (but connected) stories

Also Aasif Mandvi did a great job playing different characters and through ... Read more Read less

Clever, Great acting, Disappointing, Quirky, Cliched

See it if You like one person shows. The star of the show worked very hard impersonating all the different characters in his life.

Don't see it if You are not into one person shows!

Also The theme of the play can apply to... Read more Read less

Disappointing, Ambitious, Overrated, Dated

See it if You are prepared for a Mandvi show that’s not very funny. I don’t think he’s going for laughs most of the time.

Don't see it if You expect hilarity or a contemporary treatment of Muslim immigrant life. This play is set in 1998 and was apparently written a while back.

Entertaining, Resonant, Great acting, Relevant, Great writing

See it if you enjoy a great one-man show exploring themes of immigration. Aasif switches characters so seamlessly and with love it is a joy to watch.

Don't see it if you don't enjoy an intimate portrayal of life among those new to America and seeing the world through their eyes. Funny and touching.

Cliched, Entertaining, Slow, Dated, Cool set

See it if you're a fan of Mandvi, like solo shows, remember the 6th St./Indian Row of the '90s (as I do); for a glimpse inside an immigrant family.

Don't see it if you're afraid the 20-year-old show may feel dated; solo-show tropes such as long one-sided conversations aren't your thing.

Also Mandvi is charming, but this show left me wanting.

Ambitious, Enchanting, Intelligent

See it if He is a good player of different characters if you like one person shows

Don't see it if Not usually a fan of one person shows and found myself bored at times

Absorbing, Entertaining, Great writing, Intelligent, Refreshing

See it if you are a fan of the art of STORYTELLING and are interested in the topic of 2nd-generation immigrants' loss of cultural connection

Don't see it if you are not a fan of one-person shows

Also Anyone who think Mr Mandvi is just a standup comic is in for a surpris... Read more Read less

Clever, Entertaining, Funny, Great writing, Intelligent

See it if You like storytelling and are interested in learning about values from other cultures and ways of life. Aasif is incredible.

Don't see it if A full cast play is more of what you are looking for.

Poignant, Delightful, Great acting, Funny, Intelligent

See it if You are interested in contemplating the difficulties that immigrants and their children face in the U.S.

Don't see it if You dislike one-person shows.

Also This show struck a perfect balance between amusement and poignancy.

Clever, Funny, Edgy, Great acting, Great writing

See it if You're up for the amazing talent of a solo performer acting multiple roles in a multicultural performance about immigrant experiences.

Don't see it if You want bland entertainment without an agenda.

Also Absolutely worth seeing the talented Aasif Mandvi performing a show he... Read more Read less

Entertaining, Great writing, Intelligent, Relevant, Funny

See it if Surprised it was written 20 yrs. ago & is so timely today! 90 minutes flew by. Enjoyed much.

Don't see it if you don't like solo shows, with 1 actor playing all roles. No intermission productions.

Clever, Entertaining, Great acting, Relevant

See it if you enjoy the theatrical acrobatics of one actor embodying several characters. Or if you're interested in immigrants' stories.

Don't see it if you find one-person shows tedious

Clever, Delightful, Great acting, Great writing, Intelligent

See it if If you like Aasif Mandvi in Disgraced, if you like extraordinary one-man shows and if you want to really enjoy good theater.

Don't see it if You cannot understand anyone without a New York accent, or are not interested in the lives of immigrants.

Great acting, Entertaining, Intelligent, Funny, Timely

See it if you like Aasif Mandvi and are prepared to like him even more when you discover that he is not only a funny man but a talented actor-writer.

Don't see it if you don't like one-man shows in which the actor plays multiple characters of different genders

Absorbing, Great acting, Great staging, Profound, Thought-provoking

See it if You enjoy serious one man shows with a number of different characters portrayed

Don't see it if you are expecting funny

Relevant, Entertaining, Thought-provoking

See it if You love Aasif Mandvi and want to laugh, cry and learn about the Indian immigrant experience.

Don't see it if You dislike one man shows where the actor plays every part, regardless of gender. You find discussions about the immigrants boring.

October 14th, 2018
"At its funniest, which is often also its most uncomfortable, it has gained a new resonance...Mandvi does not need much to segue from one character to another. Sometimes it’s a small accessory, but mostly he simply modifies his posture, slightly tweaks the way he speaks...'Sakina’s Restaurant' ha...
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October 14th, 2018
"Best enjoyed as a showcase for the actor...Through changes in gesture, inflection and accent, he switches characters at the drop of a scarf...As a playwright, however, Mandvi doesn't fare as well. 'Sakina's Restaurant is a succession of thin slices of life'...The play is more nostalgic than reso...
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October 14th, 2018
"It now feels both timely and dated...The characters deliver not so much monologues but rather dialogues in which we're privy only to their end of the conversation...The play features several amusing episodes...But the evening generally trades in more serious matters as it deals with issues of cu...
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October 14th, 2018
"With its sympathetic portrayal of immigrants as they adjust to a new life and face questions of cultural identity, the play takes on an extended significance...Mandvi displays ingenuity and agility as a character actor. But while one can certainly appreciate the play’s heart and endearing simpli...
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