The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

January 5, 2014

The colorful world of Blue Men

By Jeffrey Allen Federowicz
For The Daily Item

— WILLIAMSPORT -- Unique, different and unusual are terms often used to describe a large scale production that, unfortunately, often turns out to be another cookie-cutter type show.

The Blue Men Group, however, exceeds those expectations and than some.

The show, coming to the Community Arts Center Jan. 7 and 8, is part comedy, part theatrical experience, a bit strange and very blue.

What started as a little show in Boston has grown into a visually stunning mega hit performed in Chicago, Orlando, New York City, Las Vegas, Boston and three European locations.

Now, the blue-hued men are hitting the road for a national tour filled with unexpected surprises, music, craziness and even a few Twinkies that are used in a rather strange way.

“I can try and try to explain what the show is like but it’s almost impossible to describe it. It is something that goes beyond words and regular expressions,” said Mike Brown, a longtime member of the tour whose voice swells with joy as he talks about the show. “The show is very fast-paced, very funny and we rely on a lot of audience participation. That’s when anything can happen and often does.”

The shows always feature three blue men (there has been a female or two that were brave enough to slap on the blue goop) who rely on physical movement, wild gestures and crazy antics to communicate to the audience since there are no spoken words during the show.

“At first it was a bit of a challenge not to accidentally speak out or laugh when something hilarious takes place, but now it’s easy,” said Brown.

While the show is physically demanding, the blue-eyed Brown is busy at work long before the stage curtain rises.

Taking anywhere from 45 minutes (or less than 15 in case of an unexpected change in schedule) Brown has to transform himself into a Blue Man by slipping on a black jumpsuit, bald cap and a hefty dose of vivid blue goop that makes him look like all the other blue men in each and every show.

“I like how I can be in front of thousands of people and act wild and crazy and when the show is over and the makeup comes off, no one knows it was me,“ Brown said. “It’s sort of like being a super hero, being this everyday guy during the day and this odd blue character at night. It’s a lot of fun.”

The role also required Brown to partake in an intensive eight-week training period where he learned how to act, react and be a blue man.

Fun, amusing and totally entertaining is what audience members will experience at this family-friendly show that takes entertainment to a another dimension of comedy while also looking at life in, well, blue-colored glasses.

“Having been with the show for several years, I never grow tired of taking on this role and always look forward to every show,” Brown said. “It’s great to see how the audience reacts to us and for me as a performer, one of the greatest things is when I see people leaving the theater so excited and laughing.”