Real life musical dance number in a Belgian train station.

Imagine you’re getting ready to board a train at a huge central station with lots of people milling around and the station announcer droning on about train schedules and platforms when something amazing happens:

That took place in Antwerpen-Centraal Station, the main railway station in the Belgian city of Antwerp. Apparently it was part of a promotion for a talent competition TV show called Op zoek naar Maria. According to its Wikipedia entry:

The premise of the series was to find a musical theatre performer to play the role of Maria von Trapp in the 2009 Albert Verlinde and Roel Vente revival of The Sound of Music at the Efteling Theatre. The show is hosted by Koen Wauters and featured Frank Van Laecke, Linda Lepomme, and Peter de Smet as the judges for the show.

So it’s basically a promotion for a reality TV series, but it was still amazing and the sort of thing that would be wonderful to witness first hand. It was quite the undertaking as well. Two hundred dancers, 10 hidden cameras, and a month of practice to pull it off. They even have a behind the scenes video of it. Promotional stunt or not, the world could use more silliness like that.

12 thoughts on “Real life musical dance number in a Belgian train station.

  1. Good thing they didn’t try that in America, they would have all been arrested for organized terrorism, or some such.  Let’s see you people dance in Gitmo!
    Btw, and cynicism aside, that was pretty cool.
    – Matt

  2. Yeah, I loved the Vid when I saw it Tuesday, but love all the info the info that you were able to find on it.

    I had assumed that it was a lot like the stunts I saw a few years back where folks in Central Stationa dn Victoria Station all froze at a certain moment and stayed that way for several minutes.

  3. It appears this is a growing trend in advertising. A similar stunt was done in London for a T-Mobile advert.

    Not quite as electrifying as the one I posted above, but still pretty cool.

  4. Was about to post about the T-Mobile advert – the interesting thing about it is that only 2/3rds of the people dancing were in on the stunt – there were quite a few random people who joined in.

    A more organic event happened last year at the same station:

  5. Are you familiar with “Improv Everywhere”?  Their mission is to provide just such fun and surrealness in the world.

    http://improveverywhere.com/missions/

    Finding oneself in one of their “MP3 Experiments” must be akin to those folks in that train station.

    Some of the missions spark the mind and fire the imagination more than others, but they’re all done in good spirits and fun.  “The Best Game Ever” is arguably the gem of their career.

    http://improveverywhere.com/2008/04/07/best-game-ever/

  6. I was wrong- I complain about musicals because all these people break out into choreographed routines with strangers- Looks like they really do!

    I like the way not all the dancers joined at the same time, so it looked like they were picking up extras from the crowd.

  7. Delightful. That’s what Joseph Chaiken and the Open Theatre should have been if they weren’t so angry. Yeah, it takes commercial backing to pull it off, but it’s a gift.

  8. Look out for the elderly lady in the black hat, her reaction is priceless.

    Excellent.

  9. Ha-ha! Much enjoyed this!
    Another great take on The Sound of Music can be experienced through the foreign (Australian) film: Welcome to Whoop Whoop
    Find it if you can.  Thanks for this bit!

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