Bach and Vivaldi never sounded so sensual. Rhiana and Lady Gaga have seldom been so classy.
Well-Strung, an all-male string quartet, offered serious masterworks alongside clever arrangements of some current pop hits during an enjoyable and surprisingly well executed program at the Art House in Provincetown. A team of talented young guys – hunky, cute, flirtatious – they sing as well as play string instruments and seem to be having a very good time together.
Classical selections included full movements of Mozart, Bach, Vivaldi and Dvorak. The songs are by Rhianna, Brittany Spears, Gaga and Adele, among others. Sometimes the pop fair is all-instrumental, but when the gents sing they show they’re as skilled with their voices as with their bows.
There’s some light banter between many of the numbers and when the music starts the name of the piece usually appears in an overhead projection. That’s helpful for audience members who come from one musical camp or another. I recognized the classical pieces but would have been at a total loss identifying the other stuff. It seemed to be the other way around though for most of the audience who sometimes recognized the hits from the first bar or even a spoken introduction.
The performers just wear slacks and tight t’s, all black, of course. But they seldom stay in the traditional string quartet seating for long, which keeps the stage picture from becoming static – or stuffy if you like.
With the suggestive name and the pin-up boy persona, Well-Strung has obviously emerged from the gay scene. But it’s not hard to foresee David Levinson’s fine arrangements of the pop stuff fairing very well on disc.
Well-Strung continues in P-town through September 22 and has just been booked for the Marjorie S. Dean Little Theater in New York for October 27 through November 10.