13th Street Repertory Theatre presents 'Yaki Yim Bamboo,' a fantastical children's musical about growing up that's infused with Caribbean culture.
Based on the play 'The Island of Yaki Yim Bamboo,' this tuner takes place on a magical island in the West Indies inhabited only by kids! Adults aren't even allowed to visit and don't know its location. But when one of the isle's residents enters adolescence, he knows his days at home are numbered and he's scared of leaving and never being able to return. A colorful, coming-of-age tale that's best for elementary schoolers.
"Using song, dance, and story elements, 'Yaki Yim Bamboo' aims to portray daily aspects of Caribbean culture...While the actors all performed ably, it seems a missed opportunity that there were no authentic Caribbean accents among the cast...The caricatured dialects quickly wear out their welcome...Although my four-year-old daughter couldn’t recount the main conflict or other plot elements, this did not impede her enjoyment...The songs in 'Yaki Yim Bamboo' are delightful."
"This musical gives a glimpse of life in the Caribbean, and it allows the use of imagination where all of our dreams can come to fruition. The audience gets the opportunity to go beyond its boundary, and it creates another world to explore in terms of culture. The writer’s message resonates with the audience in the portrayal of culture, geography, and zoology. In addition, he addresses the emotional side of life where some children refuses to grow up."
"Fred Rohan-Varga’s endeavor of love is an enchanting delight and certainly much more entertaining than I thought possible for an old fogey like myself...'Yaki Yim Bamboo' is enchanting, funny and a very charismatic show that proves to strike gold by interacting with the audience...I really enjoyed it and left wondering what Disney would do with a tale like this. Why isn’t Mr. Roha-Vargas and company pitching this to a major studio?"
"The creators of the musical can take a bow for staging a production that easily seeps into everyone’s consciousness, no matter what age. The story is strong, and its use of music, puppetry, and movement, merged with a hybrid mash-up of Afro-Caribbean aesthetics make for a beautiful theatrical event...Please take your children to see this, their response and participation were the best part of the entire island, it was indeed made for them."