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The holidays are officially here thanks to a
jazzy, classically-inspired twist on tradition

The Ten Tenors
Auditorium Theatre
Chicago, IL
Nov. 24, 2009
The Ten Tenors

Story by Andy Argyrakis
Publicity photos

Hailing from Australia, The Ten Tenors have long been the rage Down Under, but throughout the past ten years, the troupe's also earned international appreciation thanks to its skillful interpretations of jazz treasures, post-war standards, straight up pop and classically-inspired holiday cuts. Though the group's title would imply an incredibly formal tone, the collective of twenty and thirty somethings looked they could've either come from a boy band or given Il Divo and Josh Groban some fan base competition.

Sure they wore tuxedos, but like those aforementioned popera stars and the even more sophisticated Michael Buble, The Ten Tenors broke all the rules on opening night of its Chicago residency. While purists might raise their brow at some comical banter and purposefully charming audience interaction, the group was downright delightful in vocal tone and arrangement ingenuity. Plus the sheer diversity of the group's repertoire was enough to give attendees a literal run flashback through the past century of classics, seasonal and otherwise.

Though it just so happened that this tour was timed with Thanksgiving week, the guys are actually touring in support of its eighth studio CD Nostalgica (Warner Brothers). Performance highlights included a contemporary rendering of the shiny show tune "You'll Never Walk Alone," Louis Armstrong's immortal "What a Wonderful World" and even a new wave medley featuring true to form (albeit a bit tongue in cheek) takes on The Knack's "My Sharona," Simple Minds' "Don't You Forget About Me" and Soft Cell's "Tainted Love." And as bizarre as it sounds, a cover of Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody" found the fellas accentuating Freddie Mercury and company's sky high harmonies with operatic excellence.

Of course, considering Christmas is right around the corner, the Tenors tipped their hats to the season on several occasions, turning in classy renditions of "Silent Night" and "O Holy Night," while completely reworking "Little Drummer Boy" with jaw dropping vocal acrobatics. In fact, no matter what type of material was on the program, these unsuspecting Aussies proved their ranges were such assets that even the most skeptical could never accuse this act as being a mere novelty, but instead, a true collective talent.

The Ten Tenors appear at various times through November 29, 2009 at the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University. For additional details, visit or

The Ten Tenors

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