BioShock Musical Wipes High School Choir Competition

Even Sander Cohen would be impressed

I like video games and I like musical theater. Not a lot of crossover there (with the exception of starkidparody musical by The Oregon Trailor Chorus: a musical video game is being developed by Summerfall Studios), but there is a new unofficial musical that loosely follows the plot of BioShock, created and performed by the John Burroughs High School Powerhouse Choir of California (via Eurogamer). The students presented the performance during the Hart Encore 2022 choral show, where the group won the biggest prizes of the day: Musicianship, Showmanship, Best Soloist and of course an overall first place.

All of the game’s major players are featured, including Andrew Ryan, Brigid Tenenbaum and the esteemed Sander Cohen. It’s a little hard to hear the performers on the video at times due to the deafening cheers from the crowd – I certainly can’t blame them – but the songs they sing seem to be versions of classics with rewritten lyrics to match the theme and story they want to tell, as Proud Mary sang with the new lyrics ‘rolling underwater’ for example. You have to like a clever pun.

As someone who was part of many mediocre high school musical and choral productions in my day, I would have died to have something so cool and with such production value. I doubt many of the people in the audience knew what the production was referring to, but as a big fan of the BioShock series and as someone who has also participated in show choir (no big deal or anything, but I was a dance captain), I can say with certainty that they both BioShock-ness and performance.

It may look easy, but to have that much choreography, costumes, sets, and overall polish for a performance like that, it takes months of hard work to perfect it. Good on you JBHS, you deserve all your success and more.

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