Midtown Men returning to St. Joseph for holiday concert at CSB

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November 20, 2018

By Kathryn Sohm '21

The Midtown Men
album cover

Celebrate the Christmas season 1960’s style with the Midtown Men, the original stars from the hit Broadway show “Jersey Boys.”

The Midtown Men will perform “Holiday Hits” at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 6 at Escher Auditorium, Benedicta Arts Center at the College of Saint Benedict. It is part of the 2018-19 Fine Arts Series at CSB and Saint John’s University.

During their show, the Midtown Men will ring in the Christmas season with classic songs such as “Winter Wonderland,” “Let it Snow” and “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” as well as their radio single “All Alone on Christmas.” During the show, they will also play renditions of songs by the Beatles, the Temptations, the Four Seasons and more.

Many local music fans will recall that the Midtown Men headlined the annual Joetown Rocks Parish Festival July 3 in St. Joseph, playing before over 10,000 fans.

There’s another local connection as well. The group’s booking management comes from Rockhouse Productions, located on Minnesota Street in downtown St. Joseph.

“We hired them for a black-tie fundraising gala we produce in Washington, D.C., back in 2010,” said Jeff Vee of Rockhouse Productions. “Shortly after that, we brought our dad Bobby Vee to see them as well, and he was knocked out by their talent and authenticity. We’ve been managing the guys ever since.”

The group is made up of celebrated stars and Tony Award winners Christian Hoff, Michael Longoria and Daniel Reichard, as well as Tony Award nominee J. Robert Spencer. The concert has a seven-piece band, and the vocal group is the first-ever formed by the principal cast of a high-profile Broadway show.

Along with “Jersey Boys,” Hoff has played the roles of Frank-n-Furter in the Los Angeles production of “The Rocky Horror Show;” King Herod in the national revival tour of “Jesus Christ Superstar;” and his Broadway debut in the Tony Award and Grammy Award winning “The Who’s Tommy.” He recorded Grammy Award Winning Cast Albums for both “Jersey Boys” and “The Who’s Tommy” with famed Beatles producer George Martin.

Longoria made his Broadway debut in the smash hit musical “Hairspray,” which received the 2003 Tony award for Best Musical. Longoria trained at the Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, then traveled to the east coast to attend Tisch School of the Arts at New York University, where he earned a BFA in Drama.

Reichard played Candide in Leonard Bernstein’s “Candide” at the New York City Opera. He made his New York City debut after graduating with a BFA from the University of Michigan with the original cast in the world-famous “Forbidden Broadway: 20th Anniversary Celebration.”

Spencer was cast and originated the role of Dan Goodman in the critically acclaimed Broadway production of “Next To Normal,” for which he was nominated for the Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding Lead Actor, and nominated for a 2008-09 Tony Award for Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical. As a voiceover artist, he has performed the lead voices for two Japanese animated features: “Nightmare Campus” and the critically acclaimed, award winning “Grave of the Fireflies.”

The Midtown Men also have a self-titled album that received five-star album reviews on iTunes and have a radio single “All Alone on Christmas,” produced by Steven Van Zandt and members of Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band.

Recently, the Midtown Men filmed a live concert special for PBS at the New Jersey Arts Center. They have performed over 2,000 live shows and have a new live record “The Midtown Men: Live in Concert” and companion DVD/Blue Ray.

Come celebrate “the most wonderful time of the year” in this spectacular Broadway-style celebration.

Tickets are $35 for adults, $32 for seniors, and $28 for CSB/SJU staff. Youth and students (with ID) get in for $15, and CSB/SJU student tickets are $10.

For tickets, call the Benedicta Arts Center Box Office at 320-363-5777 or order online.

The Midtown Men is sponsored in part by Bernick’s, St. Cloud Orthopedics and Coborn’s.

The activity is made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.