MEMPHIS brings down the
house at the 5th Avenue Theater
MEMPHIS, the musical, gives us a fun and musically exhilarating look at the beginnings of Rock “N” Roll and influence that race had on its early beginnings.
The celebration of Black History Month marks the perfect time to explore this musical which combines race, romance and rock ‘n’ roll together.
Montego Glover, who plays the female lead Felecia, has a voice that will make you spring to your feet every time she sings. Her performance as the African-American beauty who falls in love with a white, sometimes brazen DJ in the 1950’s, is perfectly cast. This girl can dance, sing and act and is worth watching every minute she is on stage.
Seattle’s own Chad Kimball plays Huey Calhoon, a white radio DJ who is the first DJ to play music from black artists on his radio show.
Calhoon’s performance is unforgettable. When he first enters the stage he comes across quirky and a little geeky, but when he starts to sing his voice carries to the tops of the theater and into your soul.
The two main characters have great chemistry and their voices meld together in perfect harmonies.
One of my favorite characters is Felicia’s brother and producer, Delray Jones, played by J. Bernard Calloway (he played the role in the performance I attended).
Calloway is a big man with a voice to match. He steals the stage whenever he is on it. His love and protection of his sister is heartwarming, especially when you consider that the play takes place in the South during segregation.
MEMPHIS is playing at the 5th Avenue Theater through February 15. It is worth seeing.
For tickets visit 5thavenue.org or call 206-625-1900. Tickets range in price from $22 to $81.