DCI - Blast

By Mateo

2021-11-17

Blast! is a Broadway production created by James Mason for Cook Group Incorporated, the director and organization formerly operating the Star of Indiana Drum and Bugle Corps. It was the 2001 winner of the Tony Award for "Best Special Theatrical Event", and simultaneously received a Tony Award nomination for and won the 2001 Emmy Award for "Best Choreography".

Blast!'s instrumentation is exclusively brass and percussion, a nod to the show's roots in the drum and bugle corps activity. Blast!'s performers use trumpetsflugelhornsmellophonesbaritone hornstubastrombones (including one on a unicycle during "Gee, Officer Krupke!"), french horns, and a full complement of percussion instruments including snare drumstenor drumsbass drumsxylophonesvibraphones and marimbastimpani, and other standard percussion equipment. In addition, Blast! adds instruments not normally found in drum corps, such as French horns, concert euphoniums, trombones and bass trombonesdidgeridoos and synthesizers. Blast! II Shockwave was written to include woodwind instruments, such as flute and saxophone. Accompanying the wind and percussion is the Visual Ensemble (or VE for short), a group of dancers who manipulate a variety of props, similar to a color guard.

The Star of Indiana Drum and Bugle Corps, founded in 1984, began competition in the Drum Corps International circuit in 1985 and continued through the 1993 season. It won the 1991 World Championship. After a showing in the 1993 season, the program left the DCI circuit to tour with the Canadian Brass, in a new program dubbed Brass Theater. On December 14, 1999, Blast! premiered at the Hammersmith Apollo in Hammersmith. A PBS special of the London production aired on August 5, 2000. Blast! debuted in the United States on August 23, 2000, at the Wang Center in Boston, Massachusetts. On April 17, 2001, Blast! opened on Broadway at The Broadway Theatre, and later that year commenced its first national tour starting September 7 in St. Louis, Missouri.

Following the success of the original production, Blast II Shockwave was developed and toured the United States in 2002–2003. This production added woodwind instrumentsShockwave has not been released on CD or DVD. The creators of Blast! also developed Cyberjam which premiered in London at the Queen's Theatre in 2003. An additional sequel, MIX:Music in Xtreme, debuted in Japan in 2006 and toured Japan again in 2008. In 2016 Blast! developed and premiered Blast! The Music of Disney in Japan. Blast! The Music of Disney returned to Japan for additional tours in 2017 and 2019.

A shortened version of the show, called "The Power of BLAST!" played at the America Gardens Theatre at Epcot in Orlando, Florida for the summer of 2001, before moving to the Hyperion Theater in Disney California Adventure in Anaheim, California from November 22, 2001 until September 2, 2002.

According to the show's website, the original show has not toured since September 2020.

 

 

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