BWW Review: STOMP at Dallas Summer Musicals
For those yet uninitiated to the wild world of STOMP, know that this is the company that began it all. They are the original trash can band; the performance group that made it cool to play with garbage. There have been many imitators, but none so successfully innovative in wholly integrating everyday objects into a seamless amalgamation of movement and music. In their most recent tour they are throwing in everything, including the kitchen sink!
Comprised of a dozen performers, the group enters a dimly lit stage one by one maneuvering janitorial push brooms. Through sweeping the floor, tapping the handles, and vocal cues they emit a cacophony of sound. With additions of new props, new scenes and songs fill the stage. Without speaking a word, STOMP evokes moods of joy, frustration, jealousy, and humor. The performers, simply dressed in street clothes, move about the stage and pass of instruments with such calculation that it is easy to forget that they are individuals and not moving as one sentient being.
Live theater always has its share of uncanny mishaps, but the direction team of STOMP is so well versed in their show that they are prepared for anything. A broken broom-handle, for example, is deftly taken care of by stagehands and the exchange with the artist is utilized simply as a part of the element of play. STOMP also smartly incorporates its own floor microphones in order to properly capture all of the musical elements of their work. Dallas Summer Musicals has often received negative reviews for sound issues, but on the whole this show was given proper attention and nary a lighter flick was missed or muffled.
STOMP is a reminder that movement for movement's sake can be fulfilling and engaging. In an age where much of our art is driven by struggle, conflict, or controversy if is refreshing to witness the elements of whimsy and creativity that are driven by our primal appreciation for rhythm and dance. STOMP continues their stay in Dallas' Music Hall at Fair Park through February 19th. Purchase tickets through www.DallasSummerMusicals.org or by phone at 1-800-745-3000.