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Trans-Siberian Orchestra can rock with Christmas bells and laser light.

Byline: Jorge Bannister


WORCESTER - There aren't many times when the "light guy" is credited at a concert.

Yesterday, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra made its first show this year in Massachusetts an amazing one.

Complete with jaw-dropping laser shows, brilliant LED lighting display, and an extravagant stage-lighting setup, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra showed why many of the shows on its Winter Tour 2007 are sold out.

The Trans-Siberian Orchestra performs rock-opera style, incorporating three electric guitars, two keyboardists and a seven-piece string section, with a bass player and a drummer to deliver its music.

Performing a blistering two-hour, 34-minute set, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra performed its "Christmas Eve & Other Stories" album for the first half of the show.

With Bryan Hicks' powerful voice narrating the first half, Trans-Siberian Orchestra was relentless in marching through its 18-song, first-half set with ease, thanks to the help of vocalists Jennifer Cella and Jay Pierce.

Opening with a medley of Christmas hymns, the Trans-Siberian Orchestra allowed Hicks to use his voice to grip the 7,500 in attendance into the story line for the first half of the show.

After a rendition of "Hark the Herald Angels Sing," the Trans-Siberian Orchestra went into "First Snow."

True to form, Worcester received its first snow - albeit made of suds - which looked superb with the accompanying laser show.

Three-quarters of the way through the set, Trans-Siberian Orchestra played the first version of "Carol of the Bells" of the afternoon.

After "Carol of the Bells" came "Joy to the World," followed by the last performance of the first half, "On This Christmas Day."

Because of a 20-minute delay to the start of the show, there wasn't much of an intermission or much time for lead vocalist Andrew Ross to interact with the crowd. Instead, Ross introduced all the members of the band on stage - which included local musicians in the seven-piece string section.

The second half of the show was equally impressive, with the band just playing piece after piece without much break or interruption.

"Christmas Nights in Blue," off the "The Lost Christmas Eve" album, led off the second half.

There was no narrator in the second half, just music.

Part of that music was a cover of John Fogarty's composition "Proud Mary," to which Cella marched around the stage belting out the lyrics.

A masterful, three-minute drum solo by Jeff Plate, complete with - no surprise here - an inspiring light show, was a welcomed wrinkle in the set.

Perhaps the most recognizable Trans-Siberian Orchestra song, "Wizards in Winter," was performed halfway through the second half of the show.

Following "Wizards in Winter," the Trans-Siberian Orchestra performed a song on the upcoming "White Castle" album, "O Fortuna" - which was written by Carl Orff for "Carmina Burana."

The Trans-Siberian Orchestra finished off its set with another rendition of "Carol of the Bells." This version was accompanied by pyrotechnics toward the end for the grand finale.

The "light guy" should be proud of this year's production. The lasers, LED lights and stage lights were popping with every guitar riff; every tom, snare and bass drum hit; every key hit; and every string strum.

This is a show that is attended by men and women, adults and children and rockers and preps, and it gives each and every one of them the same feeling: elation.

Most kids love the feeling of hymns - singing them and having them played. For adults, the show certainly brings back that positive childhood memory.


CUTLINE: At yesterday's Trans-Siberian Orchestra performance at the DCU Center in Worcester, the stage was ablaze with lights and lasers - and even artificial snow.

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Title Annotation:LOCAL NEWS
Publication:Telegram & Gazette (Worcester, MA)
Date:Nov 11, 2007
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