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The man who leapt from the Kleinhans stage


Motown guys are some of the hardest-working guys in show business. I was thinking that because of the encore appearance by Spectrum, the Motown tribute band joining the Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra at Kleinhans Music Hall on Saturday.

I looked up my review of the group from the last time they were here, three years ago.

There was this:

Funny, even in historic Kleinhans Music Hall, someone can still figure out a new trick to pull off. Saturday, Spectrum singer Cushney Roberts hit on something I have never seen anyone do.  In the middle of "Backstabber," singing about people who say one thing to your face and another behind your back, he went airborne. He jumped off the stage and into the aisle. The big crowd gasped. Then, as it became evident that Roberts was fine, that he was sashaying up the aisle, the hall went crazy. The lights went up, so we could follow Roberts' antics.

Then there was this:

Roberts, who founded the group, is an especially graceful dancer, but all these guys can hold their own. Just in the first song, "Get Ready," all four were jumping in unison, turning this way and that, playing pattycake, miming the lyrics. In "The Way You Do the Things You Do," they formed what amounted to a chorus line.

Every time I am lucky enough to see one of these Motown groups, including Motown tribute groups like this one, I am amazed all over again by their synchronicity, harmonies, dress and derring-do. They're certainly a lot more fun to look at than musicians who just show up in T-shirts and stand there.

Saturday should be fun!

-- Mary Kunz Goldman


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