It's time for my review of Memphis.
A show that received 9 different Olivier Award nominations was a show that I just HAD to see! I'd always been meaning to go so as soon as Matt Cardle joined the cast I has no excuse but to go and see the show. This was his first night so I was a bit wary whether nerves would get the better of him. Since then I have very, very much eaten my words. He was, by far, the best part of the show. He seemed to gel really well into the cast. The cast included Matt Cardle as Huey Calhoun, Beverley Knight as Felicia Farrell, Rolan Bell as Delray, Simon Ray-Harvery who was the understudy for Gator, Jason Pennycooke as Bobby, Claire Machin as Gladys and Mark Roper as Mr. Simmons. With Simon the understudy for Gator last night, his voice was incredible but the problem was his character was supposed to be black and yet he was mixed-race. However nice his voice was, he seemed out of place. The cast were very good singers and there were some very catchy songs in the show. The choreography was very good and I can see why it won it's award. The costume and set were very authentic for the era and you were transported back to the 1950's. It had a very moving storyline that 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. It was also good how they added bits of comedy and drama. One thing was that I feel they did have a few too many songs. There were some bits that were like "Oh come on, you could've just said that in one line without a whole song." I know some people say that's the whole point of a musical but I feel this was a musical with a few too many songs. Apart from that it was a very good show and Matt Cardle was truly amazing.
The featured star of Memphis is, drum roll please… MATT CARDLE!
If this was how amazing Matt was on his first night, I can't imagine how great he will be after a month! His acting, singing and dancing were all incredible. You could tell he had put a lot of effort into the show and it has certainly paid off!
Now for my final verdict on Memphis. I give Memphis…
When Memphis has to close at the Shaftesbury Theatre I really hope it transfers to another theatre because this show is worth seeing just to hear Matt Cardle sing!
Think it should have got a higher rating? Think it should have got a lower rating? If so comment below.
Join me next time when I will be reviewing Sunny Afternoon.
Thanks for reading!
*Please note this show has now closed.