“’Cause this is Thriller – Thriller night!”
I did a feature a few weeks ago about some of the outdoor entertainment one might find in Downtown Disney (Anaheim – the Orlando shopping and dining area is now officially called Disney Springs). But this location also boasts venues specifically dedicated to music and performers – one such spot is the House of Blues.
This site recently announced, however, that it would be moving off-property to a new larger space at the nearby Anaheim GardenWalk. So I decided I wanted to check it out while it was still at Downtown Disney.
Happily, this month a very talented local group of singers, dancers and musicians called Hiatus was scheduled to perform a few shows here and last week I went to the second of their three shows (the third performance will be on October 27th).
While Hiatus has performed pop and rock music shows at the House of Blues previously, their theme this month was Halloween – and this made for a wild, dark and exciting musical and theatrical experience!
But before I tell you about the show, let me describe the venue first…
Getting inside the House of Blues was relatively simple as I had already pre-purchased my ticket to the event prior to that night – although tickets were also available there at the box office. Everyone waited in a line outside while they checked ID’s and gave wristbands to folks who planned to buy alcohol (the venue allowed all ages for this show but you needed to be over 21 to purchase alcohol). Next it was time go through bag check, then up some stairs and down some stairs into the House of Blues itself. There was an ADA entrance as well for those unable to manage the stairs.
There are two levels from which to see a performance here. The upper level provides seating at tables, while the lower level is standing room only in front of the stage, with the bar off to the side.
This audience area was smaller than I expected even though I’d seen photos of concerts held here previously. I can see why the House of Blues would want to move into a larger space, however it made for a wonderful intimacy in seeing the cast so close up. Although I could also imagine it getting pretty claustrophobic in there if many more people had been allowed inside!
As mentioned, the theme of the show was Halloween, which meant everything from song selections (“I Put a Spell on You”, “Enter Sandman”, “Bring Me to Life”, “Black Widow”, etc.) to costumes and makeup were of the spooky, goth, vampire, zombie variety!
The hosts of the show were ‘Beetlejuice’ and ‘Frank N. Furter’ (The Rocky Horror Picture Show) – which should begin to tell you that while all ages were allowed inside, it really was probably best suited for an 18 and up crowd (the House of Blues is on Disney property, but it is not owned by Disney) given some of their rather racy repartee – although I guess if you can see Rocky Horror at age 17, you’re not really seeing much different here!
Still, the tone is somewhat suggestive, as is some of the dancing and the language was rather adult-oriented. So be ready for a show that is much more PG-13-boundary-pushing than G rated! That said… it was a really fantastic show!
The variety of music was terrific – from pop to hard rock. Each song performance had a different style – some featured just the singers, some featured a solo dancer along with a singer, and others had fully choreographed dance routines. But they all flowed well, one into the next.
Getting into the spirit of the season, many in the audience wore costumes as well and there was definitely audience participation – from the crowd singing and dancing along with the music to one lucky member of the audience getting picked to sing a song with the band!
Really, if you’re looking for a slightly edgier entertainment than you’d typically find on Disney property – or you just want to have a great grown-ups’ night out, I can’t recommend Hiatus at the House of Blues strongly enough! So go check them out on October 27th! They are such incredible, passionate performers with exceptional voices, hot moves and killer musical skills that there’s just a non-stop plethora of talent to take in!
Mousertainment Tip: Hiatus is made up of a large group of singers, dancers and musicians. Each show may be composed of different casts and have divergent set lists. The only thing that is consistent is that you’re going to see an amazing show with some extraordinarily talented people – so go in ready for anything and be prepared to enjoy a thriller of a night!
Have you seen a show at the House of Blues in Downtown Disney? What did you think of the experience?