Motown the musical the 4 time Tony winning musical written by Motown Records Founder Berry Gordy tells the story of one of the most recognized and loved record labels in the history of popular music. This show is everything you could want, great music, outstanding acting, fantastic choreography, and stunning visual effects and costumes.
The show opens to the dress rehearsal for the “Motown 25th Anniversary Television Special” and then goes back to the very beginning of the Motown story. The show keeps Gordy in the spotlight and allows all of the other pivotal figures of the Motown legend to come and go through the show in a fluid pace. This show features some of the best vocal and acting powers I have seen in a long time. In this tour Berry Gordy is brought to life by Chester Gregory, who makes you not only love B.G. but helps the audience understand the man behind the music. Gregory takes a large role and makes it feel effortless. Jesse Nager as Smokey Robinson is incredible, he has the voice both speaking and singing that made Smokey the Icon he is today, as well as the look and mannerisms that make the show feel so very real. The only person who does a better job than Nager is Allison Semmes as the one the only DIANA ROSS! Semmes is Miss Ross. Her inflection, tone, timing and movements are truly studied and focused, creating one of the best impersonations of Diana Ross I have ever seen. And I have seen a lot of the Diana Ross Impersonators.
However the entire cast of this tour is amazing! They all with the exception of the aforementioned play more than 4 characters. Each is a real recreation of a memorable personality of the Motown cannon. The show is packed full of the hits and even a few of the misses of Motown. This is a show that keeps your toes tapping and makes you want to jump up and join in the singing. One of the things that really adds to the success of this show is the moving set pieces and the projection work created by David Korins and Daniel Brodie. And let us not forget the glittering and stunning costumes created by Esosa. Esosa has created exact replications of the looks that the Icons and Motown wore in many memorable moments in history.
All in all the best thing about this show is the unashamed love and admiration for the music of Motown. Every song from beginning to end is done impeccably and with nothing but the best of arrangements, vocals and knockout choreography. This show is truly a love letter to all things Motown. I give this show 6 out of 5 stars!
Motown The Musical performs nightly at the Bass Concert Hall through May 1, 2016. Tickets are available at Texasperformingarts.org