PRESSE REVIEW DER US PREMIERE
The Choir of Man kicked off their United States tour in front of their largest audience yet at Rudder Auditorium in College Station on Oct. 2. The performance was the opening of MSC OPAS 46th season, and received a standing ovation from a delighted audience. They will return to Rudder Auditorium for a second performance on Oct. 3 at 7:30pm.
Whether your bar experience includes going to Texas honky-tonks (like mine), watching Cheers, or visiting pubs across the pond, the overall message of the show is relatable and clear.
“We say how the pub for some people is what the mosque or church is; it’s where we come together,” says Tom Brandon, who plays the Hardman in The Choir of Man. “The pub isn’t about beer. It’s about camaraderie and brotherhood. It’s where we put an arm around each other if you’ve had a bad day like people would at a church.”
The theoretical wall between the audience and performers is torn down before the show ever starts. Guests are invited on stage into a welcoming working pub. The cast serves beer, mops up spills, mingles with other pub-goers, and creates a personal bond with the audience before the show ever starts. During this time, you start to think the cast is truly just a group of nine friends who enjoy each other’s company, though according to Brandon this is not how the group started.
“We are nine genuine friends,” Brandon explains. “We were cast together and all of a sudden we’ve become this really close-knit group and that’s why the show has been such a success. People see how much fun that we are having and it’s all genuine.”
After joining the cast on stage for a bit, audience participants head back to their seats and the real fun begins. The performance as a whole takes the audience on an emotional roller coaster. Jokes, monologues, and short skits serve as seamless transitions from scene to scene and song to song.
“We try to give the audience the best possible time,” Brandon shares. “The idea is that it’s the best pub you’ve ever been to, so you’re going to laugh, you’re going to cry, and your emotions are going to be all over the place in a positive way.”
The performers themselves each have hidden talents that pop up during the show and make you fall in love all over again with your favorite classic rock and modern pop songs. These talents range from tap dancing on the table to playing the bagpipes on the pub’s bar. The vocals of each cast member are superb and the choreography is uniquely brilliant.
While some numbers are pure fun, others cause the captivated audience to pause a moment and think. Overall, The Choir of Man is a feel good show that fosters a desire to be the best supportive friend you can be to everyone in your pub.
“Most pubs have a football team or a darts team; this pub is a choir,” Brandon says. “We come in to sing. That’s how we communicate with each other and share our love for music.”
I walked into The Choir of Man after a long day expecting to see a good show. I left feeling like I’d made nine new friends and was ready to face the next day with a spring in my step, a renewed love for music in my heart, and a new-found inspiration to raise a glass to every up and down life throws my way. The Choir of Man is a must see performance; so don’t miss your chance to see them!