Chris Wink, Matt Goldman and Phil Stanton deliver a mind-blowing show with Blue Man Group.
Before we talk about the Blue Man Group, lets get a couple of house-keeping issues out of the way.
Having bought a ticket for a show, [this one or any other], does NOT allow you the following:
- Arrive any time from ten to thirty minutes late and then quickly throw yourself down in the nearest available seats.
- When the actual seat owners arrive, even later than you ,mumble and grumble your way past the rest of the inconvenienced folk in the row, berate the later arrivals because,” we were hoping they wouldn’t pitch”
- Decide, after five minutes of announcements and especially clever attention-grabbing electronic signage, asking you in every manner conceivable to: NOT take selfies, NOT send texts, NOT take photos, NOT actually use any form of electronic communications equipment, you decide that must have applied for the rest of the World – just not Cape Town!
Having had to contend with all of the above, I really needed something to take me away from all these frustrations and transport me to another dimension, filled with fun, action, music and fantasy.
And suddenly, there it was, all packaged within three words…The Blue Man Group.
Many of those who have heard the name may have thought that this act is a fairly new theatrical concept. It has actually been around since 1991 and the years, plus thousands of performances worldwide, have allowed the originators of the Blue Man Group to hone the show into a collage that incorporates every creative element conceivable within one performance.
The adaptation of classic Marcel Marceau mime techniques keeps the Blue Man Group sufficiently apart from the audience to allow them to weave their magic from another dimension. And, magic it is!
Thundering musical rhythms, performed on instruments created from such basic materials as plumbing pipes, accompanied by an incredibly tight backing band, immediately has you believing you are in for a night of non-stop dance action.
Then the music stops and you enter a world that reminded me of the Tron movies. Surely you are inside one huge, technicolour, digital video game?
No sooner has that finished when it would appear that you are about to be given a lesson in the workings of the human body…..but not quite in a way that you would expect.
Back to more rhythms, pounding drums that launch multi-colour fire clouds into the air. Then we are back to one of the more the straightforward [ish] musical numbers, cleverly weaving in excerpts of local music from the likes of Mango Groove and Mandoza. The theatre erupts with applause.
Interwoven between all the techno wizardry, breathtaking digital images and absolute 21st century entertainment, we get drawn into what can only be described as scenes from a circus, perhaps just from another planet. For this is the time to get involved with old fashioned audience participation and slapstick that made me think of an alien Three Stooges.
That is another aspect of this show that makes it unique. Unlike many of the other trendsetting innovative theatrical events, this is truly a show for all ages. Behind us were a group of families with kids, perhaps between the ages of eight and twelve. They laughed, they clapped, they laughed some more, they prepared each other for the “very loud bit “which never actually came. As the show was about to begin, the one youngster asked her parent, “I wonder why they are called the Blue Man Group? Why don’t they call them the Pink Man Group? “Within ten seconds of the opening scene, she understood why.
Perhaps, a few advisory words. This is not Disney, it is not paint-by –numbers entertainment, it is not a Techno party, nor is it a Rock show. So if you are not prepared to open your mind by the tiniest margin, stay at home and watch re-runs of Leon Schuster movies.
But if you want:
Driving rhythmical music
Versatile interactive theatre
Space-age digital projections
An alternative take on traditional slapstick
Don’t miss the Blue Man Group.