Full Casting Announced For West End Premiere of Motown
Get Ready, Cause Here They Come! The soundtrack of a generation and catalogue of one of America’s greatest producers is heading to London! While this may seem like just another revue show to many, it is not. This new production is about have London Dancin’ In The Streets. Today, Luner on Theatre brings you the exciting news of the full cast announced for the West End premiere of Motown the Musical!
Motown the Musical finally heads to London nearly three years after it’s Broadway debut during the spring 2013 season. Slated to move into the Shaftesbury Theatre, previews begin February 11th with an official opening March 8th. Charles Randolph-White who directed the Broadway and U.S. national tour production returns to London to repeat his work. Motown debuted on Broadway in spring 2013 and was nominated for four Tony Awards that season as well. It was not, to the surprise of many, nominated for Best Musical. The show shuttered in New York in January 2015 despite making over $1 million a week at the show of its closing. The show was paired down and reworked for a U.S. national tour now making its way around the country and returning to Broadway for an 18 week sit-down at The Nederlander Theatre this summer.
Motown will be led to London’s West End by Cedric Neal (Pictured Left) as Berry Gordy and Lucy St. Louis at Diana Ross. Other leading cast members include Charl Brown as Smokey Robinson, Sifiso Mazibuko as Marvin Gaye, Keisha Amponsa Banson as Mary Wells, Cindy Belliot as Anna Gordy, Samuel Edwards as Jackie Wilson, Tanya Nicole Edwards as Florence Ballard, Portia Harry as Teena Marie, Aisha Jawando as Martha Reeves, Joshua Liburd as Eddie Kendricks, Simeon Montague as Jermaine Jackson, Cleopatra Rey as Gladys Knight, Brandon Lee Sears as Tito Jackson, Jordan Shaw as Stevie Wonder and Cherelle Williams as Mary Wilson. The role of Young Michael Jackson will be alternated by Eshan Poal, Kwame Kandekore and Joshua Tikare.
The ensemble for the production includes Jay Bryce, Daniel Bailey, Edward Baruwa, Eddie Elliott, Christopher Fry, Alex Hammond, Edward Handoll, Simon Ray Harvey, Elias Hendricks, Brian James Leys, Jayde Nelson, Kieran McGinn, Simone Mistry Palmer, Carl Spencer and Marcel J Whyte.
Additional members of the Motown creative team include David Korins as scenic designer, EOPSA as costume designer, Natasha Katz as lighting designer and Peter Hylenski as sound designer. Pippa Ailion cast the show.
Luner Lowdown: Motown is just the latest Broadway show to begin here in New York before heading across the pond to London’s West End. While the other way is usually the direction we see productions heading, America has exported a large amount of new theatrical works in recent years as Broadway as produced hit after hit and producers look to begin their journey on Broadway many times now. Given London’s history with revue shows, storylines added to a catalogue of music the public knowns well, I believe Motown will do very well in the West End. We Will Rock You for example, featuring the music of Queen, just ended its 12 year run in London last year. Motown planned to fully relaunch itself on Broadway following work being done to the London production. However, that has not been confirmed at this time and no word of a Broadway return, aside from this summer’s 18 week tour sit-down, has been discussed in recent months. It is still strange to see a Broadway show that was making over $1 million dollars a week shutter in the midst of a successful run.
Luner on Theatre will keep you updated on Motown the Musical as it heads to London’s West End to make its premiere across the pond! Tickets are now on sale for this production! We hope to bring you more news not only about this production but everything going on in London this season! For more information, visit Motown’s UK Official Website, Facebook or Twitter. (Please note; Unless a photo is noted to be taken by Luner on Theatre, we do not own/claim ownership for any photos used in this post.) And of course, check out the rest of Luner on Theatre for all your theatre news you don’t only need but want to know and so much more!