Review: Memphis The Musical

If you love Soul and Rock ‘n’ Roll, you won’t want to miss this energetic musical at London’s Shaftesbury Theatre…

Nominated for nine Olivier Awards in 2015, the smash hit musical Memphis has landed at London’s Shaftesbury Theatre featuring soul sensation Beverley Knight and X Factor winner Matt Cardle.

Inspired by true events from the underground night clubs of 1950s Memphis Tennessee, Memphis the Musical follows the story of the forbidden love of a radio DJ Huey Calhoun (Matt Cardle) who wants to change the world and a club singer Felicia (Beverley Knight) who is ready for her big break into the music industry.



The original story comes from the American playwright and author Joe DiPietro and is propelled into musical stardom by non other than Bon Jovi’s David Bryan, who provided original music and lyrics to bring it to life on stage.

Expect ultra-catchy, original songs from Make Me Stronger, Love will Stand When All Else Fails, Change Don’t Come Easy and Memphis Lives in Me alongside a touching story of Huey Calhoun as he stumbles across a black underground rock and roll bar Delray’s and the beautiful Felicia.



Against the backdrop of the conflicting cultural divide of the time, Dipietro’s poignant story demonstrates the awful segregation and brutality of the 1950s and the power of popular music.

While also exploring the beginning of the civil rights movements and how Huey and Felicia struggle against racial prejudice and the ambitions of their own careers, set to songs that had us dancing in our seats.

The wonderful Beverley Knight was a triumph – her supremely powerful vocals had the entire audience eating out of her hand – while Matt Cardle can be applauded for his highly successful first foray into acting.


* Memphis The Musical runs at Shaftesbury Theatre until 31 October 2015

Images: Johan Persson –


edition team