Beverley Knight in West End premiere of Memphis
The West End premiere of Memphis The Musical opens at the Shaftesbury Theatre 23 Oct 2014, following previews from 9 Oct, starring Beverley Knight. (The show's official web site reports that public booking will open 13 March 2014)
Based on a concept by George W. George, Memphis features a book & lyrics by Joe DiPietro, and music & lyrics by Bon Jovi founding member David Bryan.
Featuring an original score with gospel, rhythm & blues, and early rock 'n' roll fused with Byran’s own contemporary sensibility, Memphis follows the fictionalized life story of young, white radio disc jockey Huey Calhoon growing up in Memphis, Tennessee in the 1950’s. An unlikely hero with a great love of the music he hears in the black bars on Beale Street, Huey’s on-air antics and unstoppable enthusiasm for "race records" creates a new white audience for African- American music. His personal life transcends the race line as well, when he falls in love with a beautiful black singer - with dramatic consequences.
The musical won four 2010 Tony Awards including Best Musical, Best Original Score (David Bryan and Joe DiPietro), Best Book (Joe DiPietro), and Best Orchestrations (David Bryan and Daryl Waters).