The New York Times Review of "From Warrior to Bird, With Gentle Precision"
by Gia Kourlas

From the review "From Warrior to Bird, With Gentle Precision" by Gia Kourlas published March 22, 2008, in The New York Times:

"There was something distressing about the way Yass Hakoshima swept in and out of the Ailey Citigroup Theater on Thursday night — if only because it was a one-night appearance… Mr. Hakoshima, who began his mime and dance career in the 1960s, is a strange wonder. While his training with Erick Hawkins and Etienne Decroux is present, he has clearly taken the best of each to create a style suffused with humor, pathos, gentleness and precision that remains entirely his own… Mr. Hakoshima entered the stage in "Kichigai Shogun" ("Insane Shogun"), a short tale of a warrior whose fear of assassins leads him to several fluttery and comical attempts at suicide… Later, Mr. Hakoshima transformed himself into a feathery, agile ornament in "Mobile," enhanced by colorful discs attached to his costume like flowers and a golden dome design by Ralph Dorazio and Toshiko Takaezu… And in the final work, "Wings," this agile dancer, pacing back and forth, tried to fly. He faltered with each jump until an angel (the young, adorable May Li) tiptoed onto the stage to give him a bird mask… Without using bungee cords — Mr. Hakoshima arrives at his art through clarity of gesture and finely tuned repetition — he managed to evoke the sensation of weightlessness. With a joyful smile on his white painted face and his shiny black hair bouncing, he soared."