Performing Arts

Theater Review: The ‘Gazillion Bubble Show’: Childlike Delight for All Ages

TIMEDecember 28, 2021

NEW YORK—No matter how old you may be, there’s something magical in touching a floating bubble and then feeling it softly burst. Serbian-born bubble artist Deni Yang taps into this inner wonder in the enjoyable and interactive “Gazillion Bubble Show,” making a triumphant return to Off-Broadway’s New World Stages.

Yang is one of several performers who may host this one-person show. The others, all family members and all acclaimed bubble experts in their own right, are his mother Ana, sister Melody, uncle Jano, and father Fan. Fan initially brought the show to New York in 2007.

A gazillion is defined as “a very large number or quantity,” and, in that regard, the show certainly delivers. The audience gets to experience literal avalanches of bubbles released into their midst. The bubbles are often accompanied by a narrative as they take on the appearance of a snowstorm or an underwater-world fantasy, among other things.

Yang, who first became fascinated by bubbles as a young child, shows his love for the subject to all those in attendance. He proceeds to create everything from simple bubbles of all sizes, to ones with smoke inside them, to bubbles inside of other bubbles. At one point, he actually causes several bubbles to move around each other in a sort of planetary orbit. He’s even able to reach in and touch his various creations without breaking them and as he adds onto the objects he has already created.

Yang’s efforts call to mind a master craftsman as he uses different tools and techniques, along with the judicious accompaniment of music and sound effects to make each of the bubble displays come vibrantly to life. He’s helped by some exquisite lighting that makes it appear as if the bubbles are changing color.

The Yangs currently hold two Guinness Book records for bubbles: for the creation of the world’s largest bubble, and for enclosing the largest number of people (181) fully inside a bubble. Deni Yang re-creates this latter feat, albeit on a much smaller scale, with the help of some eager volunteers from the audience.

The “Gazillion Bubble Show” is first and foremost a vehicle for the younger set. Children are amazed at the different bubble creations as they, along with their parents, try to touch them as they float by. The attraction for kids is evident almost as soon as one walks into the theater. Then the audience is treated to different video images of marine life featuring turtles, eels, and other aquatic denizens before the show begins.

The performance finishes with “Bubble Laser FX.” It’s a segment in which Yang works with beams of light, coupled with appropriate background conditions, to enhance the effects of yet another mountain of bubbles as they envelop the audience.

A treat for young and old alike, the “Gazillion Bubble Show” offers joy and wonderment for all.

‘Gazillion Bubble Show’
New World Stages/Stage 2
340 W. 50th St., New York
Tickets: 212-239-6200 or Telecharge.com
Information: GazillionBubbleShow.com
Run Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes (no intermission)
Open run

Judd Hollander is a reviewer for stagebuzz.com and a member of the Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle.