It’s been confirmed that a new bio-musical about the rise to fame of the Bee Gees is in the works, and could be eyeing a place in the West End.
Universal Theatrical Group is the team behind...
The West End premiere of Memphis The Musical, based on a concept by George W. George, with book/lyrics by Joe DiPietro and music/lyrics by David Bryan, has announced an extension by seven months to 31 October 2015 at the Shaftesbury Theatre. Tickets for the extended dates will be on sale from Friday 7 November 2014.
The production is directed by Christopher Ashley, with set design by David Gallo, lighting by Howell Binkley, choreography by Sergio Trujillo, costume by Paul Tazewell, sound by Gareth Owen and musical direction by Tim Sutton. It is produced by Junkyard Dog Productions, Marlene and Kenny Alhadeff, Barbara Freitag, Joseph Smith and John Brant.
Memphis The Musical's current cast includes Beverley Knight (Felicia Farrell - Beverley Knight does not appear at all performances), Killian Donnelly (Huey Calhoun - Killian Donnelly does not perform on Thursday evenings), Rolan Bell (Delray), Tyrone Huntley (Gator), Claire Machin (Gladys), Jason Pennycooke (Bobby) and Mark Roper (Mr. Simmons), with Keisha Atwell, Arielle Campbell, Mark Carroll, Joseph Davenport, Momar Diagne, Carly Mercedes Dyer, Kimmy Edwards, Hillary Elk, Laura Ellis, Charlotte Gorton, Benjamin Harrold, Waylon Jacobs, Rachel John, Dean Maynard, Devon McKenzie-Smith, Tim Newman, Simon Ray-Harvey, Jon Robyns, Ashley Rumble, Kyle Seeley, Helen Siveter, Dawnita Smith and Alex Thomas.
The show opened at the Shaftesbury Theatre on 23 October 2014, following previews from 9 October 2014, to good reviews from the popular press: "Beverley Knight is sensational in this dynamic musical" (Evening Standard); "Killian Donnelly is something of a revelation" (Guardian); "Energetic and thrilling" (LondonTheatre.co.uk).
Synopsis: "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).