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STOMP thunders back into Costa Mesa

The unconventional percussion show will start Tuesday at the Segerstrom Center.

October 04, 2012|By Heather Youmans
  • "Stomp" opens at the Segerstrom Center for the Arts on Tuesday.
"Stomp" opens at the Segerstrom Center for… (Junichi Takahashi,…)

STOMP — the international percussion sensation — returns to Orange County Tuesday to Oct. 14 at Segerstrom Center for the Arts in Costa Mesa.

STOMP's "Tour of the Americas," which includes performance dates in North and South America, launched in September with two new full-scale routines, cast member Mike Silvia said. Since then, the show has stomped through Montana, Arkansas and Louisiana. California stops include San Luis Obispo, Escondido, Bakersfield and then Costa Mesa.

The about 108-minute show features a unique combination of percussion, movement, visual comedy and theatrics.

And of course, STOMP will not be without its signature, unconventional percussion instruments, such as stiff-bristle brooms, trash cans, wooden poles, pots and pans, Zippo lighters, radiator hoses, boots, hub caps, and even bananas.

"The show has been recently revamped," Silvia said in a phone interview. "So, we have a lot of new surprises in the show even though it's been going on for 21 years now."

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In addition to iconic crowd pleasers like "Brush," "Suspension" and "Cans and Bins," there are two new pieces on the tour.

"Paint Cans" — brought back for a second season — is a percussion and juggling act with paint cans, Silvia said.

"There's another one called 'Doughnuts,' where we strap these tractor tire inner tubes around our bodies," he said. "We kind of make shapes with them and we do a type of taiko drumming on them. Taiko is a Japanese style of drumming where they use long sticks."

The 2012 tour cast is comprised of eight performers who do not speak, but rather use their bodies to communicate in a contemporary form of rhythmic expression.

"A lot of people come and see the show and they come up to us afterward and say this is one of the best casts they've seen in a long time, which is nice to hear, because there have been so many casts," Silvia said.

While most of the STOMPers have a music background or are musicians, other cast members are actors, singers, writers, tumblers and dancers of all different styles — ballet, tap, hip hop, jazz and modern — according to longtime dancer and STOMP trainer Stephanie Marshall.

Silvia, who has been STOMPing for more than eight years, comes from a musical background. However, he left behind much of his traditional drumming technique when he started playing on household items.

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