The Ultrasonic Rock Orchestra Presents A Night at the Rock Opera
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The last date listed for A Night at the Rock Opera was Sunday November 18, 2007 / 5:30pm.
Currently at The Wilbur Theatre
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Pianist and comedian Paul Shaffer served as David Letterman's sidekick and band leader for more than… More
Quotes & Highlights
‘The spectacle is more party than an opera — one big party courtesy of an insanely versatile band. The URO brings off even the most intricate of rock pieces with effortless ease, lighthearted humor, and an audacious display of vocal prowess." —The Boston Globe
“A Night at the Rock Opera is looking like a local institution in the making…a grandiose fist-in-the-air salute to all things rock.” —Boston Herald
“Glam-bam-thank-you-ma’am rocktastic thunder." —The Boston Metro
“Bombastic? You bet. Rock Opera is one genre where that’s a compliment.” —_The Boston Phoenix _
Twenty-five incredible musicians and singers present an evening of songs from the most decadent and glitter-crazed era of rock ‘n’ roll. The Ultrasonic Rock Orchestra brings the often-heard but rarely performed crown jewels of classic rock to vivid life: Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” and “Somebody To Love,” The Who’s “Won’t Get Fooled Again,” David Bowie’s “Ziggy Stardust,” The Beatles’ “Abbey Road” and many more.
History of the Show
In 1999, Sal Clemente and Alan Ware came up with the idea of recording a new, contemporary version of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice’s Jesus Christ Superstar, based not on the Broadway show or the film or the dozens of subsequent versions, but on the original 1969 double LP nicknamed “The Brown Album.” The recording featured 30 singers, many musicians and 23 tracks.
In 2001, Sal and Alan began experimenting with filmmaking. Their short films gained the duo national exposure and having found success with combining their music production skills with filmmaking, they decided to film the creation of their new Superstar recording. They approached Andrew Lloyd Webber’s company early in the filmmaking process, only to be shuttled between music rights organizations. Undaunted, and perhaps naively, the pair soldiered on with their unique plan.
In March 2004, a feature article in The Boston Globe announced the filming of a one-off concert performance of the URO’s Superstar. The very next morning Sal received a phone call insisting that Andrew Lloyd Webber must approve any such performance. “We had tried repeatedly to clear the rights hurtles involved, but I guess no one takes you seriously until you’re on the front page of a major paper,” says Alan. “With basically a month until the scheduled performance, we really had to scramble to save the concert.” Sal adds: “We discovered that we could perform only a few Superstar songs. So, we ended up adding great songs that should have been in rock operas.”
Forced to rethink the key musical element to their documentary, Sal and Alan decided to write their own rock opera to replace Webber’s music in the film. Alan says, “The plot of our rock opera echoes the true story behind the film.” Adds Sal: “Having been denied the chance for his version of Superstar to be heard, our hero determines to write the most amazing rock opera ever heard. His band mates think he’s crazy, so he goes to London to rock Andrew Lloyd Webber into submission!”
Sal and Alan’s new semi-true rock opera already mirrors reality. After several short runs of A Night at the Rock Opera, the Ultrasonic Rock Orchestra, Sal and Alan’s mega-band of 23 musicians and singers, invades Boston’s prestigious Wilbur Theatre. At the start of their second set, the URO performs four songs from their all-new, all-original rock opera, aptly titled Will We Rock You?