Violins' backwoods cousins take to the city stage.

Fiddler on the Move 

Violins' backwoods cousins take to the city stage.

39051.0.jpeg
The fiddle is the instrument of hayseeds and hoedowns, and the violin is the backbone of symphony orchestras -- but they're the same instrument. For John Crozman, one of the five creators of Barrage, that was the problem. "The only thing that's different is the way they're played," he says. "And that's the whole premise of our show."

Barrage, which will perform A Violin Sings, a Fiddle Dances Wednesday at E.J. Thomas Hall in Akron, was conceived in Calgary in 1996 as a trip through world music that revealed the diversity of the violin. At first, the group of seven violinists and a five-piece backup band performed concerts on the world-beat circuits.

"We certainly concertized for the first three years," Crozman admits. "Meaning we gave concerts: 'How are you doing today, folks? We're gonna play a little Ukrainian tune for you.' Then we reached that point where we were ready for our big dream, which was to mount a cool stage show. That's what entertainment is today -- it's more than just playing your instruments."

The creators auditioned other performers for the group, because "we're too old -- we're in our late 30s." But "we picked musicians. None of them knew how to move," Crozman recalls. "With four guys on stage, you can do the rock thing, and it looks all right, but when you get more than that, it looks pretty retarded if you don't figure something out. So the choreography came from our desire to create a visually interesting add-on to our music."

The problem was that Barrage seemed like a Canadian version of Riverdance, only where the fiddle players also dance. But Crozman notes that any choreographed show that is "mass demographic popular" is going to be lumped in a genre with Stomp, Riverdance, and Blast.

"I don't think people are going to be confused by what they're seeing," he says. "It's just an easy thing for critics to label. We like to reach a wide demographic -- it was put together to be an entertaining show."

Latest in Get Out

  • Get Out!
  • Get Out!

    Event picks for this happy week in Cleveland
    • Apr 4, 2012
  • Get Out!
  • Get Out!

    Event picks for this best week in Cleveland
    • Mar 28, 2012
  • Get Out!
  • Get Out!

    Event picks for this transcendent week in Cleveland
    • Mar 21, 2012
  • More »

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Most Shared Stories

  • Easy Riders

    See your city in style on a Segway tour.
    • May 24, 2006
  • More »

From the Archives

  • For Love of the Games

    Power Play panders to a defiantly aging demographic.
    • Mar 1, 2001
  • Mammoth Undertaker

    The natural history museum's new elephant exhibit sparks a scientist's debate.
    • Feb 8, 2001
  • More »

Site Search

Facebook Activity

© 2014 Cleveland Scene: 1468 West Ninth Street, Suite 805, Cleveland, OH 44113, (216) 241-7550
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.


Website powered by Foundation