“Message In A Bottle” Totally Rocks Refugee Crisis, at the DCPA Thru Feb. 25th, LLD Review


By Joe Contreras, Latin Life Denver Media

“This beautiful production speaks to ones soul, spirit and mind through the creativity of dance,” said Cleo Parker Robinson, of Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Studios in Denver “What a wonderful way to get a message across,” Parker Robinson told Latin Life Denver.

Message In A Bottle is an imagined story about one displaced family in a village that is suddenly under siege, with three parted siblings stepping out on individual adventures. They go through the perilous hazards of travelling long distances, through rain soaked jungles and hostile areas that strip them of their possessions. There are bribes to be paid, detention and intimidation to be suffered. Each must find their own way to freedom. Freedom from political and social persecution that has driven them out of their once peaceful homeland.


Message in a bottle, told through dance, is a cry for help and understanding from refugees around the world and is expressed in this high energy production that revolves around the music and lyrics by Sting and the choreography of creator, five time Olivier Award nominee, Kate Prince. It is hip hop and breakdancing meets modern and ballet dance. There is no spoken dialog just the lyrics of Stings music. Sting himself, is known for his support of human rights organizations including Amnesty International and the Rainforest Fund, which he founded along with his wife, to protect both the world’s rainforests and the indigenous people living there. Of course Sting is also renowned for his 17 Grammy Awards, a Golden Globe, four Oscar nominations a Tony nomination, not to mention having sold more than 100 million albums.


Created by choreographer Kate Prince and inspired by the music and social activism of Sting, Prince has put together a masterful dance composition that reflects the complexity and diversity of the international refugee crisis that plagues the world today. The Synopsis in the Applause Magazine program states, “We live in a world where one person is forcibly displaced every two seconds as a result of conflict or persecution. In 2022, statistics show that over 100 million people around the globe had been forced from their homes. More that thirty-two million of those people are under eighteen years old.”


“What struck me the most is the diversity of all the dancers on that stage. People from all colors and races, shapes and sizes” said Jose Rosales who along with his partner, Alfonso “Poncho” Meraza operate the ArtistiCO Dance Company. Even the variety of dance styles this production brings together speaks to its diversity,” added Rosales.

The dancers and the crew are as diverse as the production itself. People from the United Kingdom Sweden, London, New York, Scotland and other parts of the world make up this tour. Nestor Garcia Gonzalez is a Mexican b-boy and dancer. Robbie Ordona, is a Filipino performer and choreographer. Serena McCall trained in Scotland with the Scottish ballet and so on and so on, the diversity just keeps coming

The opening night audience loved this production. The standing ovations at night’s end were non-stop with people howling and cheering with many wanting to dance themselves. The accolades were also endless, “Fantastic, wonderful, Inspiring, and loved it were just a few of the comments made to Latin Life Denver Media about the production.

Message In A Bottle plays the Buell Theatre at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts through February 25, 2024.