The Drifters Girl will make its world premiere at Newcastle Theatre Royal in the new year, before transferring to the West End’s Garrick Theatre in London for a strictly limited season of 20 weeks. The brand new musical, starring Beverley Knight, tells the remarkable story of one of the world’s greatest vocal groups, The Drifters, and the woman who made them.
The Drifters Girl, directed by Jonathan Church (Singin’ In The Rain), begins performances in Newcastle on 5 September 2020, playing for 15 performances until 19 September. It then transfers to London’s Garrick Theatre, where – following the limited season of City of Angels, also announced today – it runs from 1 October 2020, with a press night 22 October 2020.
Beverley Knight stars as Faye Treadwell, the legendary manager of The Drifters, who, alongside her husband, fought for three decades to turn Atlantic Records’ hottest vocal group into a global phenomenon.
From the highs of hit records and sell-out tours to the lows of legal battles and personal tragedy, The Drifters Girl charts the trailblazing efforts of the world’s first African American, female music manager and how she refused to ever give up on the group she loved. Thirty years, and hundreds of hit songs later, there is no doubt that Faye Treadwell was and always will be, The Drifters Girl.
The soundtrack includes chart-topping classics such as Save The Last Dance For Me, Under The Boardwalk, Kissin In The Back Row Of The Movies, Stand By Me, Come On Over To My Place, Saturday Night At The Movies and many more.
We are so excited that @Beverleyknight will be starring in the WORLD PREMIERE of a brand-new musical @thedriftersgirl 🎙 Based on the remarkable story of one of the world’s greatest vocal groups – THE DRIFTERS. Garrick Theatre London from 1st Oct 2020 https://t.co/hRwh4gIlGe 🎙 pic.twitter.com/MgQkDIVBNE
— THE DRIFTERS GIRL (@thedriftersgirl) November 1, 2019
The Drifters Girl has a book by Ed Curtis and will be directed by Jonathan Church, designed by Anthony Ward and choreographed by Karen Bruce, with lighting design by Ben Cracknell and music supervision and orchestrations by Chris Egan. Further casting and full creative team will be announced at a later date.
Beverley Knight is the Queen of British Soul. She has enjoyed several Top 10 Albums, including the platinum-selling Voice: The Best Of Beverley Knight. Her most recent solo album Soulsville was released in June 2016 and went straight into the UK Top 10. She was awarded an MBE by the Queen in 2007 for services to British music and charity, has won three MOBO Awards, and been nominated for Best Female at the Brit Awards three times and for the prestigious Mercury Music Prize. 2019 sees her celebrating 25 years in the music business with a live album, ‘BK25’, recorded with the Leo Green Orchestra at the Royal Festival Hall, out November 8th on Warner Music.
Beverley has also made several, highly acclaimed performances in the West End. Her debut in London was in the star role of Rachel Marron in The Bodyguard in 2013. In 2014 she received an Olivier Award Nomination as Best Actress in a Musical for her much-praised role of Felicia Farrell in the Tony Award-winning hit show Memphis The Musical, and in 2015 she played the iconic role of Grizabella in Cats at The London Palladium. In 2018 she starred as Emmeline Pankhurst in much-praised new funk and hip hop musical Sylvia at The Old Vic, for which she won a best supporting actress award at the inaugural Black British Theatre Awards.