- Would you describe our smiles as genuine, forced or genuinely forced?
How do five young pianists playing simultaneously avoid bestial cacophony? Well, it helps to be tightly knit siblings and classically trained Julliard musicians.
Those descriptions fit The 5 Browns, along with wholesome good looks that could send the Hanson brothers back to their dressing room in tears.
Their second album, No Boundaries, has spent 21 weeks at No. 1 on the Billboard classical chart. Powered by five-piano arrangements of Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue" and Stravinsky's "Firebird," the album has garnered national attention. If it's a talk show your mom enjoys, they've been on it. Both Martha Stewart and Tony Danza's shows featured the 20-somethings recently, but sadly, the Browns didn't ask them to join forces and create "The 5 Danzas," a real-world comedy where the progeny neurotically clean while on house arrest.
I failed to ask about this oversight, but you can inquire during the intermission of their upcoming concert, when the Browns will have a Q&A session with the audience.
Deondra Brown says her group does this during every show.
"It breaks down those barriers between the performer and the audience and really allows them to get a feel for the type of people we are," she says. "I think the music makes more sense as well once you get to know us a bit."
One thing that'll definitely make more sense is why we all failed to become piano prodigies. (I know you were wondering.) "[Desirae] was hitting the keys while my mom was singing and playing the piano," Ryan says. "So my mom decided to give her lessons. It evolved from things like that, us coming together as a family. She started when she was 3, and the same thing happened with Gregory, Melody and me."
The 5 Browns
Arnold Hall Theater, 2302 Cadet Drive, on the Air Force Academy campus
Friday, Sept. 22, 7:30 p.m.