Skip to main content Skip to footer site map

Kevin Shaw

Kevin Shaw

Kevin grew up performing in the Birmingham, AL community theatre circuit since 1974. After moving to Los Angeles and appearing in a number of theatrical, TV and Film projects, he transitioned to directing/choreographing musicals full time in 1992. He holds an M.F.A. in Theatre Directing from the University of Memphis and has directed/choreographed over 30 productions around the country including California, Illinois, Iowa, MIssissippi, Alabama and Tennessee. Kevin enjoys writing and has been covering the Mid-South theatre scene since 2010.


BWW Review: YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU at Theatre Memphis
April 28, 2022

After 100 years of producing musicals, comedies and dramas, Theatre Memphis has (like any other theatre lucky enough to be around this long) produced its fair share of 'clunkers' and 'classics.' Some of them were 'classics' which turned out to be 'clunkers,' but many of them, as of late, have turned out to be 'classics' that have been made to feel fresh and relatable (which is no small feat). Most community theatres across America pull out well-known titles as they rely more on the title of the show to fill the seats rather than on the actual people pulling the show together.

BWW Review: CICADA at Theatre Memphis
April 8, 2022

Theatre Memphis’ newest production (CICADA) which opened this past weekend and runs through April 16th explores the difference between a memory and a ghost and what it means to be haunted by both. Memories, like ghosts, are just manifestations (internal versus external) of the people in our lives (often family) who shaped, loved, and inspired us. Or they’re recollections (real or imagined) of kinfolk who sometimes shamed, tormented, and frightened us. Perhaps they’re both. There’s an argument to be made (generally speaking) when people utter the phrase, “Family is forever,” it’s supposed to be a good thing, but what if it’s not? What if your family offers nothing but a long lineage of misery and pain? What to do? Where to go?

BWW Review: AMERICAN SON at Theatre Memphis
February 7, 2022

Between 24-hour news and omnipresent social media infiltrating our every waking hour, it would seem that we are talking more about race in 2022 than ever before. Weren't we supposed to have moved past all of this by now? The race riots of the 1960's, Jim Crow, segregation was history, wasn't it? America just elected a woman of color to be Vice-President and an African American man to be president--twice! Haven't we evolved? Yet, many could rightly argue things haven't really changed that much, and in fact, it's only BECAUSE of 24-hour news and social media that Whites in America are finally getting to see what's really been happening all along--the unadulterated discrimination, bigotry, and murder of Black Americans. With the advent of cell phone cameras and the willingness to pull them out and start recording at a moment's notice, people of color finally have evidence to prove just how insidious and pervasive the problem continues to be. If you're one of those who are sick and tired of hearing/thinking about race, then AMERICAN SON at Theatre Memphis should be required viewing as it perfectly (and respectfully) takes the time to guide you through the stress, anguish, and fear of being a person of color in these 'United' States of America in the 21st Century.

BWW Review: OUR TOWN at Theatre Memphis
January 20, 2022

What a conundrum for an artist. Is it more effective to deliver art to an audience by any means necessary or to have the 'vehicle' for displaying it match the work itself? For example, when it comes to the theatre, can a whisper ever truly be a whisper? Such is the dilemma for any theatre since 1938 producing Thornton Wilder's OUR TOWN.

BWW Review: URINETOWN, THE MUSICAL at Theatre Memphis
October 27, 2021

I pride myself on not being a paranoid person. I really don't want to become a conspiracy theorist (seems like a lot of work). I like to believe the world is basically safe and that people are inherently good and trustworthy. When I see some people argue that 9/11 was a government plot to...actually, I never understood what or why the government wanted to kill so many Americans, but I recall thinking the explanation sounded like a devilishly grand, yet unlikely 'scheme' for mayhem. However, when a friend recently posted a meme on Facebook showing that CNN and MSNBC were recognizing Pfizer as one of their sponsors, I felt a twinge of panic. So, is Pfizer giving money to CNN to get its newscasters to tell people to get the Pfizer Covid vaccine so that the government will give more money to Pfizer? WHAT?!? Is there really an evil ploy at work here? How could I have been so naïve? Is our American system and way of life corrupt and driven by cold, hard cash? Yes, and definitely yes.

BWW Review: HELLO, DOLLY! at Theatre Memphis
September 10, 2021

Everything these days seems to be ephemeral. With the attention span of a gnat, Americans lose interest faster than it took to write this sentence. Squirrel! Platforms such as TikTok, Instagram and Tinder (swiping for love based on appearances alone) is ever-shortening society's ability to focus and appreciate longevity. With an insatiable appetite for newer and better, the world has embraced change for change's sake. Longevity is, ironically, a thing of the past. That's why it's beyond remarkable that Theatre Memphis is now celebrating its 100th Anniversary Season with the opening of HELLO, DOLLY! (Now through September 19th). 100 years of the Memphis community coming together to put on a show-that's quite a feat! Like a fine wine, Theatre Memphis seems to be just getting better and better with age. Not only have the production values increased immensely over the past few years, but the overall space itself has been infused with millions of dollars in gorgeous renovations. Everything seems to be peaking for TM at just the right time.

BWW Review: DAYS OF RAGE at Playhouse On The Square
August 27, 2021

After a 17-month pandemic-induced hiatus, Playhouse on the Square has finally opened its doors again to an in-person audience with its season premiere of DAYS OF RAGE (now through September 19th). But just when we thought it was safe to congregate again, Shelby County is now wrestling with the ongoing challenges of the latest COVID Delta Variant and theatres across the Mid-South find themselves scrambling to figure out how to present much-needed live theatre without killing anyone. For now, Playhouse seems content to socially distance the audience, while still allowing the actors to perform without masks or shields. Memphis theatres may have thought they were at the end of this nightmare, but, in many ways, it feels like they are right back at the beginning.

BWW Review: IVANKA VS. REALITY at TheatreWorks
July 15, 2021

I think it's time I came out of the closet. I've lived in the shadows for years and only a few of my closest friends know the truth. After hiding and wallowing in deep shame for far too long, I'm ready to admit I'm an addict. That's right-a reality TV addict. I know. I know. I can already feel your judgmental disdain from miles away, but I can't help myself! Whether it's watching Colton jump the fence for his love on 'The Bachelor' or Richard walking around camp naked no matter how many people it upset on 'Survivor,' I need these 'reality shows' in my life to escape my own personal 'reality.' These reality shows aren't really real, you say? How dare you! My 'Love Island' app on my phone says they're real! Well, here's the truth. I don't care! I'm not seeking truth. I'm seeking escape and I'll take it any way I can get it! Lest you continue to judge, he who is without alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, food, sex, or lottery tickets, may throw the first stone. We all find ways to escape. Reality sucks.

BWW Review: IN REAL LIFE at Hattiloo Theatre
June 4, 2021

There's an old cliché that says, 'If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.' Although it's basically another way to say that what you plan for and what actually happens to you can be vastly different, it can ease the sting a bit, if you'll let it. That's a big 'if.' Ironically though, not only can the reality be dramatically different, in some (or many) ways, it can be much better.

BWW Feature: Theatre Memphis Is Finally Ready Following $5 Million Pre-Pandemic Renovation
May 18, 2021

Theatre Memphis is set to open back up again in August of 2021 with a production of HELLO DOLLY! and a multi-million dollar building renovation.