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Review: Books, Theatre, Albums, Movies and Gigs


The Playhouse Theatre, Liverpool
March 7 – March 8 (then touring)

Writer: Hanif Kureishi

Producer: Akram Khan Company & National Ballet of China
Composer: Nitin Sawhney

Running time: 1 hr 15 mins

Image: bahok promotional image

Everyman Liverpool Playhouse official website

There are times when reviewers have to hold up their hands up say fair enough guys, that was wonderful and, having seen the European Premier of Akram Khan and the National Ballet of China’s latest production, this reviewer’s one regret is that he couldn’t get a ticket for the second night due to the theatre being sold out for weeks beforehand.

With so much pre-production anticipation surrounding this, the first Akram Khan production in which the most highly acclaimed choreographer of his generation has not performed, it would be easy to be disparaging and cynical. However, it is impossible to be so as bahok, without question, will be an event of Liverpool’s Capital of Culture celebrations that will be spoken about for years to come.

bahok performers on stageStaged as a part of the Merseyside Dance Initiative’s annual LEAP festival, the work looks at how people from different parts of the world relate to each other. Dramatised through a mixture of dialogue and dance, it is set in the departure lounge of a major airport and what ensues is a powerful and, at times, humorous unification of mind, body and spirit, sensationally illustrated through the grace and energy of the eight performers.

Never is there a moment when what takes place is not captivating, as the central characters of the moment meld with those on the periphery of the action to stunning, performance of bahokbreathtaking effect, with each nuance supported brilliantly Nitin Sawhney’s stunning score.

Whimsical without ever being fay and emotive without ever becoming patronising, bahok unearths what the word “Home” truly means and is quite simply as close to perfect as anybody has a right to expect.

Chris High.

Everyman Liverpool Playhouse official website



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“Writing gets me away for a while' from this world and into one where I, alone, can make or
break the rules as I see fit.” - Chris High 2003.
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