The West End production of Motown the Musical today (20 May 2016) releases over 350,000 tickets for sale with the show now booking at the Shaftesbury Theatre to 28 October 2017. With music and lyrics from the legendary Motown catalogue and book by Motown founder Berry Gordy, Motown the Musical also announces that Obioma Ugoala will join the cast in the role of Smokey Robinson from 4 July 2016.
You will know, of course, that this is the (company?) bio-musical telling the story of the legendary American record label of the same name, and more particularly, of the songwriter turned semi-reluctant mogul Berry Gordy who founded said record label on an $800 loan and abundant reserves of determination. But do you know what the critics, and other press, said?
I expected a big splashy jukebox musical, a-glitter with tearful Broadway sentiment and popster pizzazz. And indeed the tale of Berry Gordy’s legendary Motown record label is told through fantastic tribute renderings of its back-catalogue, the soundtrack of dates and disasters from 1959 onwards.
As rehearsals begin for the West End production of Motown the Musical, full casting is announced led by Cedric Neal as Berry Gordy, Lucy St. Louis as Diana Ross, Charl Brown as Smokey Robinson and Sifiso Mazibuko as Marvin Gaye.
Charl Brown (Smokey Robinson) and Sifiso Mazibuko (Marvin Gaye) join the previously announced Cedric Neal (Berry Gordy) and Lucy St. Louis (Diana Ross) in the West End production of Motown the Musical. With music and lyrics from the legendary Motown catalogue and book by Motown founder Berry Gordy, Motown the Musical is directed by Charles Randolph-Wright. London previews will begin on 11 February 2016, with press night on 8 March 2016, with the show booking to 22 October 2016. Earlier this week it was announced that Motown the Musical will return to Broadway for an 18 week run in July next year.