The drum and bugle corps of Blast! play a number form their upcoming Broadway show, which uses musicians and flag bearers in the same way Riverdance uses Irish step dancers. Blast! begins previews at Broadway's Broadway Theatre April 5 with an April 17 opening.
Born in the heartland — Bloomington, Indiana, to be exact — Blast! evolved from the drum corps Star of Indiana. The group's artistic director James Mason, after carrying the company to a world championship at the Drum Crops International World Championships in 1991, began to shape Star of Indiana from a 128 member group to a theatrical show. In 1999, Blast! debuted at the Apollo Hammersmith in London in a 68-person version. Among the pieces Blast!'s musicians perform are Ravel's "Bolero," Copland's "Simple Gifts/Appalachian Spring" and "Gee, Officer Krupke," from West Side Story.