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concert review: Chorallaries Manage to Offend Everyone

Bad Taste Heavy on Vulgarity, Light on Singing, But Still Quite the Experience

By Natania Antler

Bad Taste

MIT Chorallaries

March 4, 2006, 10:59:59 p.m.


The MIT Chorallaries certainly delivered what they promised late last Saturday night. Their concert was indeed not for the faint of heart or stomach, and, despite some small qualms I had with their performance, I thought all in all it was quite a fun experience. After all, any a cappella group that opens themselves up to fire from disc guns, toilet paper, Athena paper projectiles, and a rowdy audience — and survives — deserves to get credit for a job well done! The whole affair, beginning with fourth east residents from East Campus starting to camp out in front of 10-250 several days prior to the concert, and ending with two encore songs, was uniquely MIT, and smacked of raucous enthusiasm.

For this concert the Chorallaries liberally mixed songs with skits. I would have liked more songs and fewer sketches, but given the difficulty of writing good parody lyrics, I was impressed by the clever words of the songs they did sing. “1985,” a song about Freddy, who’d been a freshman since that year, was memorable. I also liked their other offerings, including a play on “New York, New York” featuring an MIT student changing to Course 15, as well as “Short Skirt and Long Leg Hair,” and “Somewhere Only We Know.” Their encore performance of “Africa” was hilarious, even though it was a bit less polished than the others. It was clear that their two encore songs were put at the end for this reason. However, most of the songs in the main body of the show were well-performed with the new lyrics, as these were familiar tunes from the Chorallaries’ repertory.

The MIT/Wellesley Toons also made an appearance for two songs, and they were received well. The Toons, all cross-dressed, sang a song about pedophilia with style, amidst a volley of paper projectiles.

The Chorallaries made fun of everyone during the show, making it a lot easier to laugh at some of the edgier jokes. “Story Time with the Administration,” which featured a Doctor Seuss-like storybook about ‘diversity’ at MIT, fell into this edgy category, but was still funny. I was less a fan of the overt sexual humor, which was liberally used, and got old quickly. Also, some of the skits that should have been witty, and not overly vulgar, were lost on me because I simply couldn’t hear them, most notably one featuring the mutant ninja turtles, mathematician style. However, the group’s protracted riff on LSC was hilarious, and continued with short plays on some recent movies, such as “Batman Ends,” and “Eunich.” I also liked the top ten list of courses that should be taught at MIT, including “7.11 Basic Nutrition,” and “6.66 Advanced Digital Electronics Lab.”

At the end 10-250 was covered in disc gun ammo and toilet and Athena paper. Environmentalists would have been appalled by the wastefulness Saturday night, but hey, maybe the Chorallaries will make fun of them next year!