Million Dollar Quartet
Atlanta Lyric Theatre
through February 26, 2017
It is brilliant that some of our local theaters now co-produce shows. For the patrons it means they may not have to schlep 20+ miles for a show they wish were closer to home; but for the theatre companies it saves money on sets, costumes, rehearsal dates and more. So this high energy show is now in Marietta and come April will re-open in Roswell at Georgia Ensemble.
Chris Damiano directed this one down to the last note, (pun intended) and the cast of 8 players really gets your blood flowing as they open with Blue Suede Shoes and work their way through 23 numbers, which for so many of us AARP members takes us back to the days of our youth.
Sun Records had a pretty basic studio in Memphis. It was the birthplace of Rock & Roll, as founder Sam Phillips put out records for several performers who were destined to soar into fame with their Rock and R&B numbers. He was the first to record Elvis and Johnny Cash. The one-act of total excitement is set at the studio.
A young piano player wants to get his work out. You’ll thoroughly enjoy seeing Ethan Parker in his role as Jerry Lee Lewis, and he makes those 88 keys really rock. The show is set on December 4, 1956 when four now-famous players wind up jamming at Sun. Carl Perkins (Christopher Kent) and Johnny Cash (Chris Damiano) show up. Carl isn’t too happy with Jerry Lee as back up. Then Elvis (Chase Peacock) drops by with his lady friend, Dyanne (Alison Brannon Wilhoit).
Sun’s owner, Sam Phillips (Justin D. Thompson), has some problems, as some of the men are going to move on to other larger recording companies, regardless that Sam is the one who gave them their first break. The story is about the music, and Ethan Parker is incredible on the keyboard, while the other three quartet members really are great on guitars. Alison has some numbers to sing, and the gang is backed up by Kroy Presley on bass and Andrew Patton on the drums.
The show opened this week to full houses, and certainly deserves it. It is impossible not to enjoy it and get excited by the music. When selecting your seats try to get on the left side of the house, where you will have the better view of Ethan’s playing. But, if you snooze you lose. Few seats remain for most days. More info and tickets at AtlantaLyric.com