Killian Donnelly in Memphis at the Shaftesbury Theatre
The Musical Theatre Performer Joining Beverley Knight in the Upcoming West End Show
Back in February it was revealed that Beverley Knight would be swapping the West End’s The Bodyguard for the Broadway musical Memphis at the Shaftesbury Theatre. The latter opens its doors at the venue in October and now another big name has been attached to the project, with Killian Donnelly set to portray the radio DJ Huey Calhoun whose work could bring Felicia (Knight) into the spotlight.
Memphis deals with fame and romance and sees the mentioned Huey Calhoun attempt to bring African American music to the masses. Early in the show he meets Felicia, a singer in a club whose work is blighted by segregation. By playing his music on the airwaves he will introduce her to a new audience and against this backdrop a Love Story emerges, one that is forbidden in 1950s.
The musical also features some celebrated songs – leading to the Tony Award for Best Original Score in 2010 –and these range from Scratch My Itch and Everybody Wants To Be Black On A Saturday Night to Love Will Stand When All Else Fall and Memphis Lives In Me, among others.
Killian Donnelly has appeared in various well known west end shows over the years, from Les Misérables at the Queen’s Theatre (as well as the 25th Anniversary Concert) to The Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty’s Theatre. In addition to these he has also appeared in another still-running show as he performed in Billy Elliot The Musical at the Victoria Palace Theatre and The Commitments at the Palace Theatre, the latter being the show in which audiences can still see him portraying the character of Deco. So he appears in Memphis as an accomplished and experienced West End performer.
Memphis is due to open at the Shaftesbury Theatre later in the year, with the venue next set to be the home of The Pajama Game from May. The latter takes over from the musical From Here To Eternity, which closed last month.
But audiences can see Beverley Knight and Killian Donnelly in Memphis from Thursday 23rd October 2014 (previews from Thursday 9th October 2014).