Chris Wink, Matt Goldman and Phil Stanton founded the Blue Man Group in 1987. Wink and Goldman became friends in a NYC junior high school and eventually reunited in NYC after college where they met Stanton, from Savannah Georgia. Identical in their blue-painted skin, skullcaps, and black clothing, they soon became a fixture of the New York underground performance art scene. In the beginning, the group played at Central Park, the Performing Garage, and Dixon Place and PS 122 in New York City, NY. Blue Man Group has been recognized for their spectacular off-Broadway theater performances by winning awards such as the 1992 Lucille Lortel Award.
Equal parts play, concert, and sketch routine, the Blue Man Group combined sight gags, physical stunts, and audience participation, with members of the front rows given plastic rain ponchos as protection from the hail of paint, food, and other assorted projectiles launched from the stage; in early 1991, they premiered their production Tubes at La MaMa, moving to the Astor Place Theater by the end of the year and ultimately winning an Obie Award for their efforts. Tubes eventually expanded to long runs in Boston, Chicago, and Las Vegas; in 1999, the Blue Man Group also issued an album, Audio, spotlighting their custom musical instruments.