Gaining popularity in Europe and their native Canada, Barrage: The World on Stage showcases the versatile musical talents of eight young violinists, two guitarists/mandolin/bass players, and one drummer/percussionist. "... more »The basic principle behind Barrage was to take as many different styles from around the world as we could get and kind of amalgamate them," says one troupe member. Created by Dean Marshall, who writes and arranges the group's songs, the music touches on Celtic, East Indian, big band swing, and American folk. This concert video, which also intersperses comments from the members, was filmed in Calgary in December 1999. Barrage is the latest entry in the multi-theatrical Stomp/Blast craze. Using violins as the binding element is daring and somewhat inspired, and the music is well-performed and very enjoyable to listen to, though Barrage doesn't always hit the heights it aspires to. Like fellow Canadians Leahy (the Celtic-focused family), Barrage members both fiddle and dance, but as singers and dancers, Barrage are excellent fiddle players. Barrage: The World on Stage has a lively charm, and as you find yourself tapping along to their enthusiastic performance, you can see why they are favorite performers at Epcot Center (where Barrage is billed as "The World's Hottest Fiddle Group"). The troupe members truly love and are dedicated to their instruments and delight in being a part of an alternative string performance. --Dana Van Nest« less
"The first thing to catch my ears while watching/listening to this video was a number early on which featured lots of percussion and a wierd Buddhist-monk-like chant undercurrent in the music. From there on I was completely hooked on this group's extremely energetic (super-charged) and highly eclectic mix of music. Although there're lots of violins (I stopped counting at 11!)the music's not at all stuffy, concert-like or orchestral - and having all the violins also doesn't overpower the musical numbers - which run the gamut from an Irish jig to a medley of 40's tunes. I understand that this group is extremely popular in Europe and their native Canada - and I also saw their show recently on a PBS fundraiser - my advice is to try and catch a re-run on your local PBS station if you're doubtful - but if you like a wild ride with violins and percussion - and if your tastes in music run somewhere between Enya and Stomp, this group's CD and video is for you!"
Thomas C. Nagy | Ebensburg, PA USA | 04/30/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"In the lineage of "Stomp", "Blue Man Group" and "Blast", this group of talented violinists, guitarist, percussionists, and bassist are breaking new ground with the use of the violin. The music is stunning, and their personalities are enchanting. It is really wonderful to see excellent musicians having a great time making music. I use this as a teaching tool for my elementary music classes, and the students love it!!!! The guitarist is phenomenal and the selection of music is perfect. Own this, you won't be sorry!"
Barrage is stunning...a great time over and over!
captaineo | Lombard, IL USA | 02/01/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Not only have I seen this video, I've seen Barrage live on stage a couple of times (seeing them once is not enough). Barrage is amazing...the music will capture you (they play all kinds...you'll even like the stuff you wouldn't normally listen to), and the choreography will leave you breathless (how DO they play violins while jumping around like that?). The fun the group has playing "Old Joe Clark" and "Sing, Sing, Sing" is contagious, and the moving melodies of "Mountain Spring" almost brought me to tears remembring a time gone by. If you get this DVD, you won't be disappoinetd."
Excellent show, misleading DVD contents label
Steve Hontz | Peoria, Arizona USA | 10/21/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Barrage puts on a powerhouse of a show that will get your hands clapping and your feet tapping. The performers are very gifted, and it's clear that they love performing for an audience. This is a show you'll want to view again and again. The DVD is a great addition to anyone's collection, but don't be mislead by the label. It says that the DVD contains two bonus features: "Documentary" and "Biography". It actually contains neither. The "Documentary" is a documentary PROMO that gives just a couple minutes worth of the actual documentary of their tour of Europe. Presumably the real documentary will be available as a separate title in the future. The "Biography" is just a few static screens that tells nothing about the individual members of the group; it's really more about the production company..."
Rav C. Yahkov Hartley | Lapeer, MI United States | 03/24/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This video was made in December 1999 of this ensemble on stage in Calgary and was the program aired on PBS during their last pledge drive. An unusually electric sound led by violinists who are not only accomplished musicians, singers and dancers but PERFORMERS who obviously enjoy blending these skills simultaneously into a stage presence that exceeds "outstanding."They enjoy performing their eclectic musical selections in a frenzied orgy of celebration as only possible when such talent performs for its own amusement. Like sitting in on an intimate jam-session.A Canadian ensemble that plays Global-Music from varied cultures in a manner that introduces the listener to the pulse of humanity without being pretentious or self-conscious. Must be seen and heard by those who enjoy lifting their spirit beyond the mundane. Will make your pants want to get up and dance!Get up, I mean get "down" and get this one!!"