BlueMax Theater Marlene-Dietrich-Platz
I spent Halloween evening at a hilarious spellbinding Blue Man performance in Berlin! The unique multimedia show is appearing at the Stage BlueMax Theater on Marlene-Dietrich-Platz in Potsdam Square. It was sold out and totally fun!
“They are blue, they are three, they carry bald heads and do not make a sound…”
History and Founders
The show – a mesmerizing “mix of music, rhythms, comedy, and intense visual effects” – originated in the US but is one of Berlin’s most successful long-term productions. There are productions in Las Vegas, New York, Boston, Orlando, and Chicago. The Berlin show began in 2004 and is the Group’s first and only permanent venue outside the US.
The show emerged from New York’s art scene during the late 1980s. The first performance was in 1988 with founders Phil Stanton, Matt Goldman, and Chris Wink as the first blue trio. Since then, the “three extremely creative bald heads have been unstoppable”. In 1991, they received the coveted “Obie Award” for theater – a well-deserved recognition of their talent.
The Blue Men actively interact with their audience during their performance. When prompted in German, the audience participates with verbal and body action. Those sitting front and center wear plastic ponchos for protection from paint spray. At one point, the three highly fit Blue Men made animal-like crawling moves as they climbed from the stage through seats in the center of the theater!
Segments of the program feature randomly chosen members of the audience. One was pretty intense, so I wonder if they “planted” that participant. There were two Olympic Gold Medal winners in the audience.
“Music and rhythm are integral parts of every Blue Man Group performance. In contrast to the band, the Blaumänner themselves do not play conventional electric guitars or drum kits, but specially created instruments.”
Unique Percussion Accompaniment
A live band, including an incredible drummer, accompanied the Blue Men on stage providing “an intense atmosphere reminiscent of a rock concert”. The “classic instrument of the troupe” is an impressive percussion made of PVC pipes. I’ve never seen anything like it. They also used a smaller but “just as ingenious drumbone, a fascinating fusion of drums and trombone”. The percussionists were fantastic!
In July 2017, Canadian Cirque du Soleil announced its intention to take over the Blue Man Group’s parent company. The successful entertainment company “intends to market Blue Man Group worldwide and diversify its performances”.
I enjoyed the hypnotic evening!