BWW Reviews: MEMPHIS THE MUSICAL at The Woodlawn Theatre
Co-Written by Ian Strain
As the scene opened at the Woodlawn Theatre, MEMPHIS THE MUSICAL started out strong. The cast sang beautifully as the show opened with "Underground" featuring Brian Hodges as Huey Calhoun and Marie Warren-Bunch as Felicia Farrell. The audience was quickly drawn into the story by the vocal strength of Hodges and Warren- Bunch as well as the supporting cast members. The Tony winning musical takes you on a journey of life, prejudices and racism that existed in Memphis in the 1950's. Loosely based on the true life story of Memphis DJ Dewy Phillips and written by David Bryan (music and lyrics) and Joe DiPietro (lyrics and book), the raw emotions of the storyline are felt strongly by the audience as portrayed by this outstanding cast. A shock came to the audience towards the climax of the first act when the story takes a darker turn and character the Gator, portrayed by Walter Sanders, brings the entirety of the theatre to silence. The cast was able to bring each audience member into the show with their exquisite performance. The full immersion caused some of the more tense scenes to stand out and allowed for many of the actors and actresses to reveal their full potential. Such musical numbers as "Scratch My Itch" sung by Wailin' Jo (Delvin James) and Company, "Change Don't Come Easy" sung by Mama (Anna Gangai), Delray (Edward Sanders), Gator (Walter Sanders) and Bobby (Kenny Patterson) had the audience clapping along. The scenery was exceptional and added to the atmosphere of the show. The professionalism of this musical was evident throughout and making it one of the best shows of the season.
Don't miss this show at The Woodlawn Theatre in San Antonio. MEMPHIS THE MUSICAL plays Friday, Saturday and Sunday through until May, 8, 2016. Go to their website for tickets soon so you won't miss out on this wonderful opportunity.