MEMPHIS, Nominated for 13 Suzi Bass Awards, Runs Sept. 10-20 at The Rialto Center

Theatrical Outfit opens its 39th season with MEMPHIS, a co-production with Aurora Theatre, September 10-20, 2015 at The Rialto Center for the Arts.


Naima Carter-Russell*, Travis Smith*, Megan McFarland*, Eric Moore*, Eugene H. Russell, IV*,

Cecil Washington, Jr.* William S. Murphey*, and many more ...

*member of Actors' Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States

Winner of the Tony Award for Best Musical and inspired by the underground clubs of the 1950s, Memphis follows the forbidden love of a white DJ who falls for everything he shouldn't: R&B music and a magnetic black singer chasing stardom. Our lovers embark with courage on a dangerous affair but are challenged by family, personal ambition and a non-accepting world. This roof-raising musical, about a revolution that erupts when a vision meets a voice, features a mix of electrifying music, high-octane dancing and soulful, soaring emotion.

Publicity and production pictures available at:

MEMPHIS AT THE RIALTO: September 10 - 20, 2015

Ø PREVIEWS: 7:30 p.m. on September 10 and September 11. MATINEE: 2:30pm on September 12.

Ø OPENING: 7:30 p.m. on September 12.

Ø Remainder of RUN: 7:30 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday; and 2:30 Saturday and Sunday.

Run Time: approximately 2.5 hours with one intermission.


$25-$50. 678.528.1500.

MEMPHIS is sponsored in part by Georgia State University's Rialto Center for the Arts.


Theatrical Outfit is committed to using the best Atlanta talent onstage and behind the scenes.


Ø Naima Carter Russell (Felicia) is an Atlanta resident and Florida State alumni. She was named a Suzi Bass Award nominee for Aurora Theatre's Tranced. Aurora stage: Lark Eden, A Year with Frog and Toad and Christmas Canteen. Regional credits include: The Nacirema Society Requests..., Alliance Theatre; Antigone, Georgia Shakespeare (Suzi Bass Award nominee); Caroline, or Change, St. Louis Black Repertory (MO); Rejoice, True Colors Theatre Company; A Raisin in the Sun, New Stage Theatre (MS); Godspell, Theatrical Outfit; Smokey Joe's Café, Springer Opera House; The Wiz and Dreamgirls, The Renaissance Project. Commercials: Westwood College, Georgia Lotto, and others. Film/TV Credits: "Banshee," "House of Payne," "Let's Stay Together," and multiple video series' for The reTHINK Group (providing family ministry curriculum). Follow her "Acting, Crafting and Raising a Baby" on her blog:

Ø Travis Smith (Huey) is a graduate of The North Carolina School of the Arts and has performed all over the country. Atlanta theatre credits include: Ghost Brothers of Darkland County, The Tall Girls and Bull Durham the Musical (Alliance Theatre); As You Like It, Much Ado About Nothing, The Glass Menagerie (GA Shakespeare); Going With Jenny, Godspell, Lost Highway (Theatrical Outfit); Of Mice and Men, Hamlet the Musical, Hamlet (Shakespeare Tavern); Smoke on the Mountain, Sanders Christmas And Homecoming at Theater in The Square. Film and television credits: Shotgun Stories, Ring of Fire, The Good Lie. Guest star appearances in AMC's "Halt and Catch Fire" and as quarterback Rex Evans in USA Networks "Necessary Roughness".

Ø Megan McFarland (Gladys) recently returned to Atlanta from South Carolina and appeared onstage in Pinter Review and in a staged reading of Tombs of the Vanishing Indian, both with Theater Emory. She has also worked with The Alliance Theatre, Theatrical Outfit, Georgia Shakespeare, Georgia Ensemble Theatre, The Shakespeare Tavern, Virginia Stage, and Coconut Grove Playhouse. Megan was the original Della in the Della's Diner series at Showcase Cabaret and Upstairs at Gene and Gabe's. While in South Carolina, she was scenic artist for the Converse Opera Theatre's productions of Suor Angelica, Dido and Aeneas, Cosi fan Tutti, and The Mikado. She directed Titus Andronicus and Laundry and Bourbon for Theatre Converse. Megan is honored to make her Aurora Theatre debut in Memphis.

Ø Eric Moore (Bobby) just finished a wonderful and successful run of Aurora's Hands on a Hardbody. Other credits include two tours of Ghost Brothers of Darkland County produced by Stephen King and John Mellencamp; The World Premiere of I Dream (2010 Suzi Bass Award nominee for Best Musical), Alliance Theatre; In The Midnight Hour, Porter Sandford Theatre); Jesus Christ Superstar Gospell and A Christmas Carol, Alliance Theatre; Jitney and Tambourines to Glory, True Colors; Godspell (2008 Suzi Bass winner), Big River (Suzi Bass nominee), To Kill A Mockingbird, Mahalia! Gospel Musical, Lost Highway and Ain't Misbehavin, Theatrical Outfit; Five Guys Named Mo, Once On This Island and Christmas Canteen, Aurora Theatre; Ain't Misbehavin, Atlanta Lyric Theatre.

Ø Cecil Washington, Jr. (Delray) received his B.A. in Theatre Arts from Alabama State University along with a certificate in film and television from The New York School of Dramatic Arts. Cecil has performed in MLK: A Letter from the Birmingham in Jail as MLK; 42nd Street as Julian Marsh (the first African American to play the role); Play to Win as Jackie Robinson; Benjamin Coffin, III in RMTC's RENT; Mister in RMTC's Color Purple, The Musical, and Christian in City Equity Theatre's Ruined. Cecil has appeared on "Law & Order" and in numerous films. Cecil is excited to return to The Aurora after making his debut performance as Marius Pontmercy in Les Miserables.

Ø Eugene H. Russell, IV (Gator), a proud Atlanta native and Tennessee State University alumnus, excitedly returns to Aurora Theatre after appearing in Once On This Island and Big River. Other regional credits include Illyria and Much Ado About Nothing with Georgia Shakespeare; What I Learned In Paris and Jesus Christ Superstar GOSPEL at the Alliance Theatre; Our Town and Tambourines to Glory with True Colors Theatre Company; and Before It Hits Home with St. Louis Black Rep, for which he received the prestigious Woodie King, Jr. Award. Film/TV credits include Under The Dome and the soon-to-be-released feature film A Sunday Horse. "We are what we treasure."

Ø William S. Murphey (Ensemble) is happy to return to Theatrical Outfit for the second leg of this wonderful show, after an amazing 6-week run at The Aurora. Bill is an Artistic Associate at T.O., having appeared in many productions including The God Committee, Driving Miss Daisy, Around the World in 80 Days, Two Drink Minimum, A Confederacy of Dunces an The Fabulous Lipitones. He next returns to the Aurora for Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, a co-production with the Horizon Theatre. Bill's onscreen appearances include "Army Wives," "Satisfaction," "Constantine" and "Complications," and "The Game" on television, and the films Devil's Knotand the upcoming Paul Rudd feature, Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving. Bill is a proud member of Actor's Equity Association. Thank you for supporting live theatre!

Theatrical Outfit continues its vision of creating compassion - one story at a time - by starting the conversations that matter. Our thought-provoking and soul-stirring 2015-2016 season lineup will transport audiences from the radio airwaves and smoky music clubs of Tennessee in the 1950s with Memphis (a musical co-production with Aurora Theatre); into the mind of one of the 20th Century's brightest visionaries with R. Buckminster Fuller: The History and Mystery of the Universe; from Africa to Victorian London via the pluck of an unstoppable young girl with A Little Princess (a musical); around the globe as a mysterious book trades hands and evolves in the world premiere of Moxie; and into the complex hearts of a mother and daughter vacationing in a sunshine-filled Tuscany of yesteryear with The Light in the Piazza (a musical). From Tony-winning musicals to one-man shows to a family-friendly holiday musical to world premieres, our courageous Season 2015-2016 truly offers something for everyone!

Atlanta's second-oldest continually-operating professional theatre company was founded in 1976 and has been led by Artistic Director Tom Key since fall 1995. Key led the company through the creation of its award-winning downtown home, the Balzer Theater at Herren's, the first U.S. theater to achieve LEED certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. The theater is on the historical site of Herren's, the first Atlanta restaurant to voluntarily desegregate (in 1963). Theatrical Outfit tells consistently high-quality, soul-stirring stories, often from great classics and contemporary literature that feature many of the best writers of the American South: Carlyle Brown, Truman Capote, Evan Davis, Horton Foote, Harper Lee, Cormac McCarthy, Flannery O'Connor, Walker Percy, Sherry Shepard-Massat, Elyzabeth Gregory Wilder, Hank Williams and Tennessee Williams. Theatrical Outfit is in the midst of transformation. After retiring its mortgage debt, the organization turned its attention to creating a new, multi year strategic plan, which was finalized in mid-2014. The new plan is a growth model and the first action was to hire a managing director, Lee Foster, who has just completed her first year with the organization.

Memphis (September 10-20, 2015) will be performed at the Rialto Center for the Arts, 80 Forsyth St., NW, Atlanta, GA 30303. All remaining shows in the 2015-2016 Season will be performed at the Balzer Theater at 84 Luckie St., NW, Atlanta, GA 30303.

Related Articles View More Atlanta Stories   Shows

More Hot Stories For You