Reviewed by Rosemary Knight & Lucy Gwilliam
Yesterday evening we travelled to the Palace Theatre in Manchester to watch an absolutely spectacular performance of Million Dollar Quartet. This production tells the true story of one night in December 1956, when four extremely talented musicians met at Sam Phillips’ Sun Record Studios and performed an impromptu jam session, making rock’n’roll history in the process. Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis met up at the studio purely by chance and this would be the only occasion when they all performed together. There is not much of an actual storyline to this show, just fantastic, feel good, foot tapping tunes.
Right from the onset, this production is joyous – a fantastic celebration of rock’n’roll at its finest. Jason Donovan is very realistic in a non-singing role as record producer Sam Phillips, while speaking in an authentic sounding Southern drawl. The real star of the show however is Martin Kaye playing extrovert Jerry Lee Lewis to perfection right down to the amazing piano playing, using his hands, feet and even playing backwards without looking. His performance really is awesome. Ross William Wild is superb as Elvis Presley, imitating his trademark sexy hip gyrations and snarling upper lip to perfection. Matthew Wycliffe as Carl Perkins and Robbie Durham as Johnny Cash are both excellent in their roles. Special mention must be given to Katie Ray, playing Elvis’s girlfriend Dyanne, impressively singing ‘Fever’.
The songs themselves are the real stars of the show – all of the great rock’n’roll classics including ‘Great Balls of Fire’, ‘Hound Dog’, ‘Blue Suede Shoes’, ‘That’s All Right Mama’, ‘Walk The Line’, ‘Sixteen Tons’ and many more fantastic songs which left the audience tapping their feet and some of them even dancing in the aisles.
This is a real feel good production and we enjoyed every minute of it.
Tickets cost from £19.90 to £49.90 (plus £4 transaction fee).
Million Dollar Quartet is at the Palace Theatre in Manchester from 15-20 May 2017, for more information or to book tickets visit www.atgtickets.com/palacetheatre or call the box office on 0844 871 3019.
Palace Theatre, 97 Oxford Street, Manchester, M1 6FT | 0844 871 3019