Bloomington, IN: Chimes of Christmas at IU Auditorium

Last week we went to the Singing Hoosiers' Chimes of Christmas concert.

I have been avoiding writing anything up about it, but decided that I ought to be recording all the things we do, no matter how much we liked or disliked something. So, here goes.

First, I ought to preface this with a couple of things. One, we were probably in a really bad mood once the concert started due to the shuttle (which I'll get to), so my opinion is very likely heavily influenced by that. Two, we were not at all in a bad mood before the shuttle. And three, I've spent a significant portion of my life singing in choirs (including singing in Carnegie Hall!), having leads in musicals and plays (including the lead in a show that I performed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland!), singing the National Anthem solo in front of many hundreds of people at multiple sporting events, being the soloist multiple times at Mass growing up (including my own 8th grade graduation Mass, and being both the youngest soloist and youngest lector in the history of that church at 11 years old), performing in vocal competitions, taking private voice lessons for years and years, and in general just singing a lot. So while I haven't gone on to pursue music, I think I have a good understanding of what I'm talking about and am at least somewhat qualified to comment on it.

We went into this concert with high expectations. The Singing Hoosiers are a Grammy-nominated group, plus the Jacobs School of Music is one of the best music schools in the country. I had never seen the Singing Hoosiers before, but I had heard only good things. So we were excited to go and had been looking forward to it since buying the tickets.

Well. The show was just disappointing. The singing sounded fine for the most part (and the band was pretty good), but the show itself was not very exciting. I want a Christmas show to be magical. I want to hear familiar songs that are uplifting and get me in the Christmas spirit, not songs about how the environment is being destroyed. I get that this is a show within academia and academia has certain politics and agendas, but a Christmas concert is not the right time to air your grievances. Other songs were trying to be "modern" and they just sounded ruined. The only song that did sound really great was Charlie Brown Christmas' Christmastime Is Here (and that was performed by a local children's choir, not the Singing Hoosiers).

I might have enjoyed the concert more if I hadn't been so mad about the transportation getting there. We took one car and went to Noodles & Co. on Kirkwood for dinner after work. IU Auditorium offers free parking at a couple of garages downtown on nights when there are shows, and we have taken advantage of that before, so we decided to do again. It was bitterly cold (5 degrees Fahrenheit at dinnertime) and walking sounded like a terrible idea. So instead, we got on the free shuttle that is supposed to take us from the parking garage to the auditorium. We got on the shuttle at 6:30. The shuttle waited around until 7pm, when it was now completely packed and standing room only, to leave the parking garage. Then, the shuttle went to another parking garage, where it tried to fit more people on our already-crowded bus. Then we sat in traffic for another 20 minutes before getting to the auditorium. The concert was supposed to start at 7:30. We arrived at the auditorium at 7:23...after getting on our shuttle at 6:30. You can bet I was upset. We did not take the shuttle back, instead opting to walk back in the 0 degree weather with ice and snow on the ground (for the record, we beat the first shuttle back to the parking garage). We probably will not ever take the shuttle again.

And we probably will not go back to this concert, either, which is a huge shame because we love Christmas and Christmas music (we've had our Pandora Christmas music station going since November). If anyone has other recommendations for Christmas concerts around this area, I'd love to hear them. And if anyone else went to this concert and has a different opinion of it, I'd love to hear that too.
Bloomington, IN: Chimes of Christmas at IU Auditorium Bloomington, IN: Chimes of Christmas at IU Auditorium Reviewed by Maria on 10:02:00 AM Rating: 5

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