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CHINGLISH BROADWAY REVIEWS
Opening Night: October 27, 2011
Synopsis: David Henry Hwang's Chinglish is about an American businessman who arrives in a bustling Chinese province looking to score a lucrative contact for his family's sign-making firm. He soon finds that the complexities of such a venture far outstrip the expected differences in language, customs and manners - and calls into questions even the most basic assumptions of human conduct.
NEW YORK TIMES REVIEW:
"Even though much of the dialogue is in Mandarin, non-Chinese speakers should have no difficulty interpreting “Chinglish,” the sporadically funny new play by David Henry Hwang, which opened on Thursday night at the Longacre Theater. That’s not just because of the helpful supertitles — largely translations of mistranslations, in which English is merrily mutilated, and the principal source of this production’s mirth. Mr. Hwang’s comedy, about a bewildered American businessman hoping to make his fortune in capitalist China, is laid out with the frame-by-frame exactness of a comic strip. "
"Most plays strive for clarity. David Henry Hwang's latest, "Chinglish," does the opposite.
The playwright behind "M. Butterfly" has returned to Broadway with the fine Sino-American comedy, a work that explores the space between words and meaning. It opened Thursday at the Longacre Theatre."
"How American perceptions of China have changed since "M. Butterfly," David Henry Hwang's 1988 Pulitzer-winning drama about an American diplomat, hopelessly obsessed with old-fashioned visions of beautiful Asian women, who gets seduced and deceived by an opera star just prior to the ascendance of Mao Zedong's Cultural Revolution."
"You may have heard that large swaths of David Henry Hwang's new play "Chinglish" are spoken in Mandarin, with English surtitles. Don't let it intimidate you. The choice is essential to the success of this smart and uproarious comedy examining the difficulties in bridging Chinese and American culture. Staged with sharpness and subtlety by director Leigh Silverman on David Korins' wondrously whirling and interlocking set of hotel rooms, lobbies, restaurants, government offices, and the like, the show is both a crackling good time and a thoughtful, nuanced look at the challenges posed by the latest nation out to usurp American economic supremacy.
"In David Henry Hwang's clever and entertaining comedy Chinglish, now at Broadway's Longacre Theatre after an earlier run at Chicago's Goodman Theatre, a white American businessman named Daniel Cavanaugh (Gary Wilmes) attempts to win over a prospective new client in China. However, he finds the task more difficult than he initially imagined, and that language is only the most obvious barrier to effective communication. "
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