I was eating out with my family at a local restaurant, one of the sports bars/family restaurants with televisions displaying various sporting events, when I saw them. Blue Man Group. They were the ‘half-time’ entertainment for a poker game of all things and I just couldn’t look away. I scarcely know anything about poker but I couldn’t avert my gaze, Blue Man Group was just too enthralling. That got me thinking; why was that? Why is Blue Man Group so intriguing?
This question rolled around my mind for a few days and I still didn’t have an answer. Yes, they stand out (they’re bald and blue after all), but it is more than just that. Then it hit me; it’s not their look, that’s just the initial draw, it’s our own curiosity of what they will do next that keeps our attention. After all, you don’t just stare at a large and hairy spider because it looks weird. No, it’s because we want to know what it will do next. Thoughts of what the spider could do run through your head as you stare at the arachnid and all of them serve to keep your attention and Blue Man Group works the same way.
The moment the group steps on stage, the audience becomes taken aback by their bizarre appearance and are immediately intrigued by what they are going to do. Then, when they start to perform, it’s even more amazing. Like any good theatrical company, they move, they dance, they do things that I can’t even describe and it all keeps us drawn in. If their look was the lure then their music is the actual hook.
The group doesn’t simply stay with one or two specific genres, but instead incorporate multiple categories, both popular and obscure, and perform in such a unique way. From using instruments to PVC pipe, the group plays like any other instrumental band, but with a flair that, coupled with their unique way of playing and style that makes them even more appealing. This is why their shows are almost always sold out, a culmination of good music and enticing visuals.
What started as a simple collaboration between three friends (Chris Wink, Matt Goldman, and Phil Stanton) in the late 1980’s has blossomed into something that has withstood the test of time. They and the other members that would soon join the iconic group were able to combine visuals and audio in a way that not many popular bands can do because they’re not like other bands. Blue Man Group isn’t just a theater group, or even a musical group, they are an experience.