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Theater Review: A thumbs up for Emojiland

Emojiland, currently playing Off-Broadway, is a fun time for all. And not just for your average fan of musical theater. We live in a technology dominated world where emojis help express our emotions. Sometimes better than words themselves. So it’s no surprise that a show with emoji characters at the helm would be fun but also relatable and emotional.

The show opens with several fun musical numbers in Act One, filled with lights and colors. A perfect fit for the world of emoticons. The Princess Emoji rules all, and even sings a fun song about ruling the land. But soon, the show turns into a reflection of our own world. Celebrating how everyone is different and unique in their own ways. And the show is especially real when it comes to the characters’ struggles.

Take Smize – one of the first characters the audience meets. (Fun fact, Smize is played by Laura Schein, who also co-wrote the show). Smize, the Smiling Face with Smiling Eyes emoji, has a positive outlook on life. She has too… it’s her entire appearance. But she feels one-dimensional, and longs to feel less like an easily-satisfied people-pleaser.

But everything changes when the newest update happens and new emojis come to town. And the entire world of Emojiland is tuned upside down. One of the newest Emojis is Nerd Face, with brains but also a ton of heart. He tries to make friends in his new world, gaining the attention of Smize and even Skull, who has a dark aura and a looming idea…

No spoilers of course, but in the mist of the humor and fun musical numbers, the show tackles some tough topics. Shutting people out (emotionally and politically), growth, self-worth, infidelity, even the spreading of a virus. When the show reaches its climax, you’re be at the edge of your seat with your emotions on the surface.

Emojiland is now playing Off-Broadway in NYC until March 19th!

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