What is the Story of The Dance and the Railroad?
David Henry Hwang’s drama tells the story of Ma and Lone, two Chinese railroad workers who are waiting out a historic 1867 labor union strike in California. While Lone tirelessly practices traditional Chinese dance on the mountaintop, Ma admires his new friend’s strength, passion and agility. Lone looks down on the younger, less experienced Ma and sends him through a series of tests to prove his devotion. Although it isn’t easy, Ma passes the tests and earns Lone’s trust and respect. As Lone shares secrets of his past and teaches Ma about the art of the Peking Opera, the pair forms an unlikely bond while the labor union finally comes to an agreement.
[Yuekun Wu and Ruy Iskandar perform] artfully constructed routines that seem to seamlessly blend acrobatics, ballet, martial arts, and music.Review by Melissa Rose Bernardo from Entertainment Weekly
The jutting copper-colored platforms that form Mimi Lien’s set for the Signature Theater Company revival of David Henry Hwang’s 'Dance and the Railroad' provide a pleasingly serene vista for the eye.Review by Charles Isherwood from The New York Times
What Is The Dance and the Railroad Like?
The Dance and the Railroad stars Ruy Iskandar and Yuekun Wu navigate Mimi Lien’s abstract, multi-level set with ease as they dance through the California mountainside. Dressed in traditional Chinese costumes, Ma and Lone share stories of their heritage in this engaging, lyrical one-act production. Part dance extravaganza, part historical drama, The Dance and the Railroad is a moving production that should not be missed.
Is The Dance and the Railroad Good For Kids?
Although the impressively choreographed dance sequences will fascinate children, the play’s less action-packed moments are likely to go right over their heads. The Dance and the Railroad is a great choice for teens, especially those interested in Chinese history and culture.