A Contagious Cacophony at STOMP! Excites, Entertains, and Energizes

Photo credit: Junichi Takahashi


Broadway San Jose brings one of the best deals in town to the Center for Performing Arts this week with STOMP. This amazingly energetic ode to the love of rhythm, music and dance will be in town only until Sunday, but it’s a show that no one in the family should miss.

It’s a fully complete entertainment extravaganza.  Eight muscled percussionists wordlessly dance and pound away on any conceivable item that might make a sound.   Each performer has their own character and personality that comes across even without words, and these characters continue storylines throughout the show as they joyously entertain with their music.

If you have never seen this show, throw away any preconceived notions you might have about it.  It’s not just the banging and clanging of metal garbage cans, although there is certainly that.  There are also incredibly choreographed syncopated dances with push brooms and giant tractor tires, and soothing music from lighters and match books.  Music is made with plastic bags, paper bags, soda cups, just about anything you can think of INCLUDING the kitchen sink.

It’s visual eye candy as well, from the colorful set to the constant lighting shifts to the very charismatic and handsome troupe of performers.  Six men and two women give everything they have to entertain the audience, and you will be quite amazed at the energy involved.  There were only a few short breaks for each performer, but they gave 100% every moment they are on stage – and then somehow manage to double their energy for the final number.

Photo credit: Steve McNicholas

But most of all these eight performers bring their love of music (and I’ve never met a percussionist who wasn’t drumming on everything in sight, every minute of the day) to every member of the audience, and hopefully, most especially, to the young people with their imaginations.  They quite explicitly show that music can be made from anything; from anything that makes the slightest, softest sound to anything that makes a head throbbing crash, and everything in between.  The creation and love and enjoyment of music, the medicine for the soul… this is what STOMP brings to its audience.

STOMP is not about banging trash cans.  It is amazing, genius choreography, it is extremely talented and attractive performers, it is imagination and beauty AND the love of music which is a quality from which everyone can benefit.  It also brings community service: Read to the end to find out how you can help “STOMP OUT HUNGER” when you see the show.

STOMP your way into the theater, and clap and snap your way out of it with a smile on your face and a rhythm in your step.  And by all means, bring your kids.

Broadway San Jose
WHEN:    April 12-17, 2011
WHERE: San Jose Center for the Performing Arts
255 Almaden Blvd, San Jose
TICKETS: Single tickets ($20-$69) can be purchased by calling (408) 792-4111 or visiting www.sjtix.com.

Audiences can help to “STOMP OUT HUNGER” by entering the code word HUNGER when ordering tickets and a $5 donation will be automatically made to Second Harvest Food Bank–enough to provide 10 complete, nutritious meals. Bins will also be available at the San Jose Center for the Performing Arts, while the show is in residence, to collect canned and packaged foods. Foods most needed include: peanut butter, canned meat such as tuna, and meals in a can with pop-top lids (soup, stew, chili).  Collection cans will also be available in the lobby for monetary donations.

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