See it if you enjoy children's fables brought to the stage with a historical twist. Here a small cast does a commendable job in good costumes in 1 hr.
Don't see it if you want a full staged production - this is limited but effective. A bit of trouble hearing two soft voices. Loud noises may be upsetting.
“Inventive staging and stellar design...Combines Andersen’s ‘The Nightingale’ with 18th-century Chinese politic...Chua presents a power struggle between teenage half brothers...whose father challenges them to prove who’s more worthy to succeed him...Many comic elements are played so broadly that little seems at stake. Briskly directed by Fan the show is fun, but watching it feels more like cheering pro wrestling than like witnessing a struggle for the soul of an empire.”
"Although Chua is less interested in beauty for beauty's sake than Andersen, the look and sound of 'The Emperor's Nightingale is still stunning, drawing on a wealth of traditional Chinese art forms to both enliven and culturally ground the story. Leading the way are Wolfslau's period-inspired score and You-Shin Chen's eye-popping set, which pays lovely tribute to the art of Chinese paper cutting. Smith's lighting design nicely highlights all of the wonderful colors in Chen's set."
“Anderson’s original tale of a sweetly singing nightingale that captures a Chinese Emperor’s fancy, is changed to a morality play about leadership. In keeping with Pan Asian Repertory’s mission to highlight Asian theatrical traditions and use Asian performers, Chua has loaded his production with all things Chinese. From the music, to the costumes, to the Lion Dance...’The Emperor’s Nightingale’ in this iteration is a fine choice if you have a child in tow.”