Dark Side of Oz
Mr. Smalls Theatre
Saturday, November 29, 2014
Either Pink Floyd are complete geniuses, or the coincidence of “Dark Side of Oz,” is a modern day phenomena. Any way you look at it, the 1973 chart topper, “Dark Side of the Moon” matches up with the 1953 classic “Wizard of Oz.” It is said the synchronicities weren’t discovered until the 1990’s, while Pink Floyd denies the claim at all. Imagine in 1973 having to flip a record at least 4 times for the same results you can get today, by repeating a compact disc.
This year the Touchfaster crew of Pierce Marratto, Brandon Martin and Kevin Saftner, along with band director, Diego Barnes with The Ruckus Bros., have set out to embark on their third classic album tribute show. Past shows include The Beatles “Magical Mystery Tour,” and Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.” This years production of “Dark Side of Oz” almost didn’t happen. “Honestly, there was some hesitation just because we were really unsure as to how we could possibly top a 21 piece band doing Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” to a sold out Mr. Smalls,” admits Marratto.
The entire project takes at least 8 months. Touchfaster handles everything but the music, including promotional strategy, venue booking, budgeting, costumes, ticketing and so on. On the music side, The Ruckus Bros., which includes a 15 piece band filled with some of Pittsburgh’s top talent, work countless hours to make everything perfect. Nathan Zoob who will be performing original music with his band Wreck Loose, is also part of Ruckus Bros. “There’s some room for exploration, but we need to capture the original album as pristinely as possible,” explains Zoob.
All proceeds from the show go to The Sarcoma Foundation of America and WYEP’s Reimagine Media. The Sarcoma Foundation of America has special meaning for Marratto, an organization that he hand picked to support. In 2013 his younger brother, Luke was diagnosed with Ewing’s Sarcoma. Marratto watched as family and friends at school pulled togeather to support him through various fundraisers. At School there was a campaign called LukeStrong. “This whole thing also got me thinking about all of the people out there who don’t have the amazing support system that my brother has and I wanted to help out a little if I could,” tells Marratto. A donation will be made in Luke’s name as a thank you for everyone’s continued support.
“Expect a psychedelic spectacle. In addition to being projected on the large screen, the film will be playing on smaller TV sets all over the stage. The animators worked hard to keep the films integrity while maximizing the jaw drop effect when its paired with the album,” says Marratto. Nathan Zoob is already calling it “best show of the year!”
Along with Wreck Loose, Gypsy & His Band of Ghosts, Velvet Heat, Drowning Clowns, and Tracksploitation will also be playing original music. Doors open at 6 PM and is all ages. VIP is 21 and over.