In a special preview performance Wednesday night at Montana State University Billings, Up With People showed why they’ve been successful since 1965.
The production value of their show, the cultural diversity of the performers, and the upbeat nature of the performance make for one entertaining show.
International performers introduced themselves by country, with large contingencies coming from China, Mexico, Norway and Sweden. One young man from South Africa got a roaring applause that was matched by the crowd’s enthusiastic roar when a Montana girl introduced herself.
One highlight of the show was a medley of hits from the decades, starting with the 1960s and Bob Dylan, rolling through the Village People’s “YMCA” complete with costumes of a police officer and Indian chief, and including Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”
At the beginning of the show, a performer said Up With People’s mission is promote non-violence, especially among young people. One poignant song illustrated this message with the lyric, “Stand tall and nobody can reach you.”
Up With People is performing Friday and Saturday night at the Alberta Bair Theater. Call the theater at 256-6052 for tickets.