'Simon and Garfunkel Story' to start Emens Artist Series

Ball State, Photo Courtesy
Ball State, Photo Courtesy

In 1967, Ball State welcomed Simon and Garfunkel to campus. Today, their spirit will live on as “The Simon and Garfunkel Story” is performed at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Emens Auditorium.

The theater-style concert leads audience members through the tale of how Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel became one of the best-selling music groups of the 1960s until their fallout in 1970. The show finishes with the pair’s concert reunion.

Marking the first of eight, “The Simon and Garfunkel Story” was chosen as part of the Broadway-based Artist Series set to perform at Emens this year.

“Simon and Garfunkel are an iconic musical duo that has stood the test of time,” said Kristi Chambers, assistant director of marketing and communications for Emens Auditorium. “We scheduled this performance to showcase the history and talent of Simon and Garfunkel and to provide Ball State and the Muncie community the opportunity to experience ‘The Simon and Garfunkel Story.’”

Chambers said performances of “The Simon and Garfunkel Story” use state-of-the-art video projection and lighting as well as a live band. 

Taylor Bloom and Ryan M. Hunt portray Simon and Garfunkel in the show. Both rehearsed in and out of official rehearsal times before starting the tour from New York. 

Hunt said he grew up listening to Simon and Garfunkel and has always felt the “message and beauty” of their work, which led him to audition for the show. 

“Getting to perform this incredible canon of music from this iconic duo is my favorite part of being a part of this show,” Hunt said. “I sing 27 songs in the show, and that is no small feat, so being ready and warmed up for that marathon is the hardest part. Yet there is nothing like sharing this music with both fans and new listeners.”

Bloom, however, had little exposure to the duo, but thought the show would be something exciting to tour the country playing. 

“My favorite part has been seeing what the music means to the audience because they really seem to have a personal relationship to it,” Bloom said. 

While both Bloom and Hunt enjoy performing the show, Bloom said being on tour for so long can be tough.

“Being on tour has made it hard for me to stay mentally and physically in shape, especially on the slow days, so I have a daily yoga practice and I have been reading books that I've had on a list for a long time,” Bloom said. 

Chambers said that over a quarter million people across the world have seen “The Simon and Garfunkel Story” and that the Ball State audience will be moved and encouraged "to follow their dreams."


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