In 1987, longtime friends Chris Wink, Matt Goldman and Phil Stanton had an idea: They donned bald caps and a thick coat of blue paint to transform into Blue Man Group, a trio of non-verbal musicians who are fascinated by the world around them. After staging a series of wacky Blue Man "happenings" around New York City, Wink, Goldman and Stanton premiered a paint-flinging, Twinkie-munching, toilet paper-covered extravaganza called Blue Man Group: Tubes on November 17, 1991 at off-Broadway’s Astor Place Theater. Exactly 21 years later, Blue Man Group is still astounding audiences with eccentric humor and impressive musicianship—not only off-Broadway, but all over the world. In honor of the show's momentous milestone, check out these 21 fun facts about our favorite men in blue.
1. Blue Man Group co-creators Chris Wink and Matt Goldman met in junior high school. They met third Blue Man creator, Phil Stanton, in college in 1986.
2. In one of their very first “happenings” in the late ‘80s, the Blue Men held a funeral for the dying decade in Central Park.
3. For their first three years of performances at off-Broadway’s Astor Place Theater, Wink, Goldman and Stanton had no understudies.
4. Nearly 70 drums are used in each production of Blue Man Group.
5. The Blue Men use greasepaint in the shade of Yves Klein blue.
6. Evita star Ricky Martin was the first celebrity to try paint drumming alongside the Blue Men.
7. Past and present members of Blue Man Group created the band Uberschall, an improvisational rock group based in Las Vegas.
8. There are currently six stationary productions of Blue Man Group throughout the world (New York, Boston, Chicago, Orlando, Las Vegas and Berlin), one U.S. national touring production and one show aboard the Norwegian Epic cruise ship. Each production varies slightly, and the show is frequently updated to include new illusions, jokes, songs and performance routines.
9. Blue Man Group contributed the score to the 2004 TV drama The Jury.
10. In 2004, Blue Man Group co-creators Goldman, Wink and Stanton founded The Blue School, a progressive private school in New York City.
11. The cast of Blue Man Group is happy to meet audience members after the show—but they won’t talk! For extra fun, try showing them your iPhone or Kindle.
12. In their infamous marshmallow mouth-catching trick, the Blue Men use cold chunks of cream cheese, molded to look like marshmallows—real marshmallows expand too quickly.
13. On TV’s Arrested Development, Tobias Funke (played by David Cross) is cast as a Blue Man Group understudy and frequently leaves blue paint smudges around the Bluth family home.
14. On October 10, 2012, the Las Vegas cast of Blue Man Group went skydiving from their old quarters at the Venetian Theater to their new home at the Monte Carlo.
15. The Blue Men have made cameo appearances on 30 Rock and Scrubs.
16. Blue Man Group has released three albums (Audio, The Complex and How to Be a Megastar Live!), collaborating with Moby, Tracy Bonham, Dave Matthews, Gavin Rossdale and Venus Hum.
17. Before becoming Blue Men, actors attend a five-week Blue Man Group boot camp where they learn to spew paint, throw and catch marshmallows, play plumbing tubes and more.
18. In the production’s first two years off-Broadway, Blue Man Group used 1,152 boxes of Cap’n Crunch, 3,072 pounds of cream cheese, 5,920 pounds of Jell-O and 49,384 Twinkies.
19. All Blue Men must be between 5’10” and 6 feet tall.
20. Broadway.com correspondent Susan Blackwell’s husband Steve White is a former Blue Man!
21. Blue Man Group’s dance single “Shake Your Euphemism” contains over 50 different words for “butt,” including “wiggle monkeys,” “flounder that is rounder than a quarter pounder,” “jiggle twins,” “flab cabbage” and “George Forman grill.”