These shows in Asia are more tempting than a Broadway musical
ASIA, the world’s most populated continent, is famous for its varied geography, historical landmarks, beautiful languages and dialects, diverse cultures and traditions, various tantalizing cuisines, and dramatic natural sights.
There’s hardly a shortage of things to do, places to go, people to meet, and food to eat.
But other than pigging out on street food in Taiwan or haggling for the best price at a Thai market, travelers would also enjoy shows that are unique to each country.
Attending one of these shows in Asia is akin to attending a Broadway musical in New York City or in London, except that the formats and styles are completely different from one another.
Tokyo: Robot show
A word of warning: hold on to your eyes for the fear of them popping right out of their sockets because this trippy show is as wacky as wacky can get.
Tokyo’s Robot Restaurant, located in bustling Shinjuku, is a dinner show that’s a colorful clash of bright lights, special effects, crazy decor, blaring techno music, taiko drums, dinosaurs, dancers, and yes, robots.
It’s relatively family-friendly as most of the sexualization has been taken out of the show.
The eclectic one-hour cabaret show will shock you, amaze you, spin you right round, and leave you wondering what just hit you.
Address: 1-7-1 Kabukicho Shinjuku-ku Tokyo, Japan.
Hong Kong: Chinese opera
A popular drama and musical theatre that evokes the mystery and charm of ancient China, the Chinese opera incorporates various traditional art forms such as music, song and dance, martial arts, acrobatics, as well as literary art forms.
It’s distinctive and recognizable, with its falsetto singing, a spectacle of kaleidoscopic costumes, exaggerated makeup, and extravagant sets.
There are many varieties of Chinese opera, from northern and southern China.
Regardless of Beijing or Guangdong, one thing’s for sure, it’s respected and appreciated everywhere in the country as a beautiful and timeless craft.
Hanoi: Water puppet show
Hanoi’s water puppet show is a representation of a traditional Vietnamese theatre show that dates back centuries.
Located near the Old Quarter’s Hoan Kiem Lake, the Thang Long Water Puppet Theatre puts on daily 45-minute shows and is open 365 days a year.
The shows are performed in a waist-deep pool, reminiscent of the original water puppet shows which took place in actual rice paddies. Puppeteers would hide behind a screen and use large rods to support the puppets, making it appear as if they were moving across the water.
The show is loved by both domestic tourists and international visitors alike.
Address: 57B, Dinh Tien Hoang Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi.
Nanta is a South Korean non-verbal comedy performance that incorporates the rhythm of the traditional Korean percussion quartet, samulnori.
The show, the longest-running in Korean history, is based on a story of three chefs and a manager attempting to finish preparing for a wedding reception within a strict time limit.
Very few words are spoken throughout as it focuses on using acrobatics, magic tricks, comedy, pantomime, and audience participation. The performance also features improvised “instruments” such as cutting boards, water canisters, and kitchen knives.
The 90-minute performance is held on the daily at the Hongdae Nanta Theatre.
Address: B2F, 357-4, Seokyo-dong, Mapo-gu, Seoul.
Pattaya: Tiffany’s show
Said to be Thailand’s most prestigious cabaret show, Tiffany’s Show is a household name in the country.
What started out as a one-man show performed for a selected group of friends on a fateful New Year’s Eve in 1974 has now become a multiple award-winning event, having bagged the country’s most coveted “Thailand Tourism Awards 2017 AWARD OF EXCELLENCE: Thailand’s Best Recreational Attraction for Entertainment” title in 2017.
More than just transvestites dancing along to Thai beats, the family-friendly show is put together by an international production team with expertise in scenery, costume, lighting, and sound.
Every night, over 100 professional performers in dazzling costumes take the stage for the hour-long show.
Address: 464 M.9, Pattaya 2nd Road, Pattaya 20260, Thailand.