Motown the Musical

Theatre, Musicals
2 out of 5 stars
3 out of 5 stars
(44user reviews)
 (© Alastair Muir)
1/7
© Alastair MuirJordan Shaw (Stevie Wonder)
 (© Alastair Muir)
2/7
© Alastair MuirBrandon Lee Sears, Samuel Edwards, Eshan Gopal, Simon Ray Harvey, Simeon Montague as The Jackson 5
 (© Alastair Muir)
3/7
© Alastair MuirEddie Elliott, Simon Ray Harvey, Simeon Montague, Joshua Liburd, Brandon Lee Sears as The Temptations
 (© Alastair Muir)
4/7
© Alastair MuirKeisha Amponsa Banson, Aisha Jawando, Cleopatra Rey as Martha Reeves and the Vandellas
 (© Alastair Muir)
5/7
© Alastair MuirCedric Neal (Berry Gordy), Charl Brown (Smokey Robinson)
 (© Alastair Muir)
6/7
© Alastair MuirSamuel Edwards (Jackie Wilson)
 (© Alastair Muir)
7/7
© Alastair Muir

Time Out says

2 out of 5 stars

This jukebox musical has one of greatest set-lists ever… and one of the laziest scripts

I literally can’t think of any reason beyond being a massive racist (or actually hating music) that would cause anybody to regard the output of Motown Records – aka the greatest and most culturally significant pop label in history – with anything other than rapture. So it goes without saying that ‘Motown the Musical’ is unimpeachable from a music perspective.

Can a show be musically unimpeachable and also not very good? Yes. Yes it can.

Ironically this Broadway import’s Achilles heel starts with the embarrassment of riches that is its set list. It packs in about 60 songs – most musicals average less than half that – which is such a vast number that even accepting the frequent medleys, you’d think it might be wisest to dispense with a plot (a la ‘Thriller Live!’, the cheerfully story-free musical about Motown’s most famous son, Michael Jackson).

Instead it’s Motown founder Berry Gordy’s own adaptation of his autobiography, tracing the label from mad gamble, to monolithic success, to fractious implosion.

Given the author, the worry is that Charles Randolph-Wright’s production would come across as a hagiography, but to be honest there’s not even time for that. The show is effectively one enormous montage sequence in which Gordy (Cedric Neil) and his dopey sidekick Smokey Robinson (Charl Brown) spout a bit of exposition, audition a band, write a hit for them, spout a bit more exposition, audition another band, write another hit for them, etcetera etcetera. In the background the civil rights movement advances, but it’s never engaged with in any great measure. Gordy starts a relationship with Diana Ross (Lucy St Louis), who is so thinly sketched you might assume Gordy had made her up. Fascinating, iconic musicians – Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Michael frickin’ Jackson – wander on, sing a song, then wander off.

The only real character is Neal’s surprisingly flawed – nervy, paranoid (albeit unquestionably a genius) – Berry. But with nobody three-dimensional to spark off, we learn less about him that we should.

The simple fact is that other jukebox musicals set in a similar era – ‘Jersey Boys’, ‘Beautiful’ – do the storytelling thing a lot better. ‘Motown’ has more hits and better hits than both those shows combined. But while Gordy can write music with soul, he doesn’t seem to be able to do the same with his own story.

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Users say (44)

3 out of 5 stars

Average User Rating

3.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:8
  • 4 star:13
  • 3 star:15
  • 2 star:7
  • 1 star:1
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moderatorStaff Writer

God love it, but 'Motown' is a little bit all over the place. It feels like a stretch to cram in so many tunes, the story of the Motown founder's life and a sort of civil-rights-y back story and have it still flow satisfyingly.

GOOD: Motown songs! The singing! It's hard to to sod up. There's a good atmosphere in the audience. (Also if you're under 35 you'll feel SO young!) NOT SO GOOD: The story, the acting, the pace – it's a bit like they're rushing through it to get to the next song.


So, I liked it, but, disclaimer, I did go for free! 

tastemaker

A tightly packed Motown song festival. Unfortunately most of the songs are truncated, and lost in the clumsiness of the production. A dumbed down story which just holds up the break neck songs. There is also a frantic number of scene & lighting changes which are tacky & pretty amateurish (especially for a 2019 West End production). Talking of amateurism -there is also cringe making moment where members of the audience are invited up to join "Diana Ross" in a song.

I have always loved the Motown sound - just wish I hadn't gone to see the show. 

Tastemaker

A great night out if you love the music. It’s not the best musical I’ve ever seen, but every tune is a hit, and I thought it was well written and acted. I found the story very interesting. And just so much fun!!


Absolutely loved it, to the point of having my friends asking me to stop signing out loud.

It’s very interesting to see the story of one of the most important music companies in history, that shaped, not only the Black music and culture, but Music itself.

tastemaker

AMAZING. If there’s only one musical you ever see in London, surely it’s got to be this! So entertaining, there wasn’t a dull moment. The cast is ridiculously talented, 10/10.


What a night out!! 

Loved the bulk karaoke and dancing at the end :)

Yes, it was a little slow in some parts but overall I thought it was a good night out, particularly if you LOVE hearing the Motown tunes like me. Brought back some really happy memories and it looked like it was the same for everyone else in the audience too.

If you have have some lovely memories of Motown classics like the Jackson Fives, The Supremes, Diana Ross and Marvin Gaye you will really enjoy it. If you haven't heard of these guys you probably won't LOL 

Tastemaker

I found Motown a bit odd.

There are so many songs that there is not much time or space left to tell a full story but you don't get a full performance of many of the songs because there are too many to perform them all so I feel like it does itself a disservice in that respect.

That said, the production is very enjoyable, there isn't anyone who won't recognise most, if not all of the songs included and it tells enough of a story to provide a backdrop to the music even though it's normally the other way around.

tastemaker

If you like Motown you will find it hard to dislike this show, it churns out hit after hit and gets your toes tapping. That being said it does this at break neck speed, often cutting off some of the classics half way through. I would have preferred if they had half the songs and sang them in full. Cedric Neal who plays Berry Gordy has a fantastic voice and stage presence, it's just annoying that he's one of the best singers in the show and in real life he only wrote the songs. At the performance I saw, the opening numbers' sound levels seemed very off, with the orchestra being so loud it was hard to hear the words, this settled down in the next few numbers. I'd say take this show at face value, grab and drink, see it on a Saturday and enjoy it for the music.

tastemaker

What a sing-a-long, clap-a-thon, dance-a-thon of a show! The production delivers a whole jukebox of Motown hits while telling the story of the most legendary record label in history.


Admittedly, the story isn't the star of the show, the songs are. It's more of a showcase of the music than a documentary, but more could've been made of the politics of the time, and the issues with major artists leaving the label were almost bounced over. 


The cast is hugely talented, with each playing a multitude of characters to cover a compilation of hits. Expect lots of Diana Ross, ample Jacksons, oodles of Smokey and nowhere near enough Stevie Wonder. But then... there's never enough Stevie! 


Overall, it's a good fun show in a fabulous West End venue. 

Tastemaker

This is by no means the worst musical I've ever seen (see my review of The Bodyguard for that) but it's not much better. The hits are there but they're only performed in snippets, with a script that doesn't even bother to link them together or tell a fully-realised story of the record label that had its own sound. What a disservice! And the guy playing Berry Gordy the night my friend and I went was super awkward... I think he might have been an understudy but still, the characterisation wasn't there. My friend and I laughed through this show, it was that bad. Honestly. Save your money and see Dreamgirls instead.

Tastemaker

I was given tickets to Motown the Musical as a gift and I really loved it! You’re immediately entertained and there are some dazzling hits and costumes throughout the show. I would definitely recommend this show, you’re guaranteed to never get bored and you will leave in a good mood.

Tastemaker

Wow wow wow!

I've been waiting to see Motown the musical, at the Shaftesbury Avenue Theatre, for quite a while so when I grabbed the opportunity when it came.

It was absolutely worth the wait. Anyone who has any knowledge of Motown, knows how extensive it's history is and how iconic it was/still is in the music industry.

Berry Gordon, the founder of Motown, came from humble roots, in Detroit, where after moderate songwriting success, he changed direction and moved into founding a music company with various labels. Including Motown. Motown, one of the labels and the most successful became cemented in musical history. 

The Musical was fab-u-lous! With performances of everyone from the Jackson Five, to Diana Ross & the Supremes. Stevie Wonder to the Commodores. Hits included, "Ain't No Mountain High Enough", "Signed, Sealed, Delivered", "My Girl" and "Heard It Through the Grapevine" were standouts. In particular, the actor Sifiso Mazibuko (Marvin Gaye) was amazing. The embodiment of Marvin, the voice, the singing and the demeanour, was just phenomenal. 

From start to finish, I was encapsulated and mesmerised. Whether I was singing, dancing in my seat or just watching in awe. The stage sets whilst simple, provided just the right backdrop for such a legendary story. Whilst the plot does not hold much substance, the music alone does wonders.

An absolute must for any lover of R&B music!

tastemaker

Motown is a fun jukebox musical. The cast is fantastic and perform the songs beautifully. The only thing lacking was a coherent story, it felt more like words inserted to bring the songs together. It is a good time, but it's not the best musical I've seen. 

tastemaker

I went to Motown The Musical without really knowing what to expect and knowing very little about Motown except for the most famous artists. I ended up really loving the show, discovering quite a few bands in the process. Motown is the story of an entrepreneur who put his life in the business, with its highs and with its lows. You cannot help but being impressed. Only negative point for me was that the ending was a bit rushed and felt way less powerful than the first half of the show.


An excellent production with a very talented cast. The songs were such great classics and got the audience on their feet. The storyline was simplistic, yet creative and told the story of the rise of the Motown label, although I felt though the show concentrated more on the music than the storyline itself. Overall, a fun, feel good experience!


Whilst the music was beautiful, I struggled with the story telling as thought it lacked something special. Vocals were at times incredible but as a regular theatre goer, not the most earth shattering voices as an overall cast. Worth a watch if a fan of the music though.

tastemaker

Motown the Musical has a simplistic story-line ; the rise, success and end of the Motown label. It is basically a concert with a variety of truncated Motown hits from artists such as The Temptations, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Mary Wells and of course Diana Ross plus The Supremes. There were probably some others too but apart from a very young, extremely talented Michael Jackson plus brothers, no-one else really stood out.

The artists made money but eventually left the label wanting either more money or more control. Berry Gordy held the show together often with his singing and sometimes merely words.The choreography was very 60s and true to the era. The costumes were fun but the show itself was not more than a pleasant-enough evening. I'm glad I didn't go for the most expensive seats in the house. I might have regretted it.

tastemaker

The story of the rise of Motown is interesting and this musical does a good attempt of telling this story through music.  The songs are fun and the performances make the audience want to join in.  However, you do feel that this show could have been much more and ultimately ends up being far too cheesy. 


Just go see this production! The energy is buzzing & you'll know pretty much every song. This slick & stylish musical charts the Motown story & I never realised the impact these incredible artists had in breaking down racial segregation & positively impacting on a dark chapter in US history. The cast are universally fantastic but special mention for Diana Ross & the young Michael Jackson. This is a superior show that will leave you dancing in the street.. :)

Tastemaker

Much like majority of reviews on here, I also feel that this show has two elements. One is all the fabulous, catchy, toe-tapping, head-bobbing songs that people know and love - and the sheer abundance of them crammed in almost one of top of the other, but the flip side is a thinly woven narrative that seems superfluous in places, as well as a really unimpressive set which is a shame. Having seen Jersey Boys and Beautiful, the songs compliment the story and go a long way to telling it. With Motown, the songs come thick and fast and an (interesting but clunky) story is composed around it. Also, I found the sets disappointing havign seen the visual wonder that is Aladdin just a couple of weeks before. I feel a bit more money could have been spent to give it the 'wow' factor. Anyway, it's a fun night out and I know people will go regardless, but go for a great soundtrack and don't expect to learn too much. 

Tastemaker

Lively and upbeat, this is a musical which focuses much more on the musical than the storyline but does try to offer some insight into the rise of the civil rights movement that was happening at the time. The songs are (thankfully) really crammed in and all of the big musical numbers were great, lots of enthusiastic dancing and soulful voices. Standout performances for me were young Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder, both of which managed to capture the essence of the performers to a T.


This is defiantly a musical about the music, and you don’t learn an awful lot about any of the musicals themselves, but aside from an oddly placed audience participation section in the middle, it was a really fun and feel good experience!

Tastemaker

This is only the 2nd musical I've ever watched in my life, and the first in London.
My parents arrived to town and I wanted to take them to see something all of us can enjoy, so I immediately thought of Motown.
I agree with some of the reviews here that the storyline was a tad flimsy, however it didn't stop us from enjoying the music, the choreograph, the stage design and of course performance.

All of those artists are extremely talented and we all absolutely enjoyed the show.

It was impossible to stop tapping your feet along with the music and whatever the storyline was, it was quite hard to not get invested in it and feel a part of that era.


Highly recommended if that's the kind of tune you like.

Tastemaker

Motown attempts to tell the story of the label's history by stringing together hit after hit with the most tenuous links. The narrative is basic at best and the whole show feels like a variety performance, albeit one that is solely Motown music. It's frustrating too as no song gets to run it's full length so it feels like you're sat with someone skipping tracks on a best of album. To top it off, it's a long show and boy does it feel it. 


The musician's can play, the set works and the huge cast of performers can clearly perform, with a few doing very good impressions of their real life counterparts, but it can't stop this show feeling like a bundle of songs strung together like bunting. 


Music was great, the story was slow, and the show was about 15 minutes too long for me. The highlight was the kid that played Michael Jackson, so it was definitely worth staying past the interval, but I did find myself wondering if I'd be able to sneak out after that without too much tutting. I didn't manage it, and had to stay until the bitter end.

tastemaker

It kicks off with a dance off between the beloved Foundations and Four Tops and ends with the entire cast singing Ain't No Mountain high enough, that brings a standing ovation AND a funny wiggle dance to the tube! 


I loved it! OK, this won't any awards for script but this musical is simply, a musical.. Hit after juicy Motown hit, the show keeps you entertained and clapping and  yep ,secretly singing along!


The show centers around Motown records founder, Berry Gordy and takes you through his passion, and struggle to bring Black music into popular culture. The actor playing Berry was outstanding and you really connect to his life and work through the ongoing history and politics at the time as well as through his artists.


Motown the musical is about passion, heart, family and soul; through watching it, you are immersed into a not to distant reality of popular culture, the songs blur into a mirage of what makes music great today. I'm watching it and reminded of Dirty Dancing, My Girl, Top of the Pops, EVERY wedding and school disco and THOSE embarrassing parent karaoke tribute nights!


Honestly, you won't regret taking this wave of nostalgia and if that doesn't convince you, the characters are incredible - little Michael Jackson, the sublime Diana Ross, the sexy but somewhat arrogant Marvin Gaye and of course Mr Stevie Wonder himself, make this musical into something special to watch, enjoy and appreciate!


Thanks Motown for letting me relive an era of fantastic music, and for letting me build a whole new experience around some of the word's best loved hits!

Tastemaker

There aren't enough stars to say how much I enjoyed my night at Motown the Musical. I wish there was a glitter font for me to write in!


I'm someone who describes themselves as uninformed fan. As in I love so many records but I rarely know their history or which label etc etc.


This musical tells Berry Gordy's story and so along side the glitz and totally amazing classics that are packed in it  gives an overview of black politics from the view of the musicians and artists over about 60 years. This really touched my heart. Yes, there is a degree of artificiality as there always in in stringing together a story to showcase the music. I would have liked few more whole songs or a reprise at the end of some of they best songs - but then what they are is a matter of personal opinion. 


I'm sure there are different views on the perspective and interpretation it presents too. But that's true of all theatre  - it's for entertainment - if you want pure fact watch a documentary. Some of the key lines and themes really rang home to me.


'It's not what you say - it's what you mean!' The general themes of self belief and not allowing society's barriers to stop you - follow your dreams. I felt pretty emotional at times as it was such a clear illustration of how racism prevents people achieving their full potential.


The atmosphere was electric. The performances  - singing, acting and dancing were tip top and the costumes were divine. I really want to know where they got some of the everyday clothes - as i wanted so many of them.


We had fantastic seats that i had purchased ages ago and as we were a large group we got top price £80 stall seats for £40 - we were a perfect distance from the stage - close enough to feel really part of it, far enough way to see the whole of the stage.



I laughed, cried and sang in equal measure and would have loved to be able to dance as well!


I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED this and can't recommend it highly enough.





Tastemaker

I am a huge fan of Motown music, and was delighted to get my hands on a reduced price ticket for this show. The storyline follows Berry Gordy and how with an $800 loan and from one small house in Detroit his record label Motown took over America and then Europe. The musical is packed with the greatest musical hits, and features Diana Ross and The Supremes, The Jackson Five, Stevie Wonder, and Smokey Robinson. The writers have managed to pack in over 50 songs- but this means that the majority of them are segments rather than full songs, and so just as the audience is getting into one and singing along it stops. This makes it feel a little jerky, with constant set and scene changes, and makes it harder to get to know the characters and really care about them. This is still a fun musical, but I think it misses the mark and tries to do too much.

Tastemaker

Although this musical is high energy, it failed to make much of an impression. There were some great songs in Motown the Musical, but I was surprised how few of the approximately 60 songs I recognized. Often only snippets of songs were performed before the story moved on and unfortunately some of them sounded off key. A word of warning that if you're sitting in the right hand side of the first few rows, you may be called up to join in at some point in the show. Throughout the show I couldn't help but think that this musical was trying to be a bit like Jersey Boys but it just lacked the same polish.


Excellent show from start to finish. All the acts were great singers and performers and really got the audience involved. The scope of the performance did mean that it was difficult to engage and connect with the characters however.


The TOL reviewer was either drunk or high or having a bad day or having unrealistic expectations of life or all of the above when when they saw this show. I'd put Motown in the 'crowd pleaser' category. It's a ton of fun! Last night the audience couldn't hold themselves back from singing along throughout the show (even causing one performer to break momentarily when they beat him to his next line - golden!). Cedric Neal's vocals as Berry Gordy is goosebump-worthy in several numbers. The kid playing MJ is a total showstopper too! With a run-time over 2 1/2 hours, the audience was left wanting more. Had a hard week? Want a fun night out? Go see Motown. 


SO WHERE WERE THE 4 TOPS? Other than at the start with a medley with the Temptations, there was nothing else that I can remember.  A great disappointment if you are a fan of the Tops, which I am. To me they had more hits & were more successful than the Temptations, especially keeping their original line up right until the end. Only Abdul (The Duke) is alive.

I didn't like the 'mish mash' of songs started then end before it should, another one starts from another singer. I felt the Diana Ross voice was 'too shrilly' & grates, unlike the real Diana's who has a soft, smooth voice. The guy she picked to sing in the audience had a great voice. It's hard to know if he was 'a plant'? Fortunately we didn't have sing-along & happy clappy during the show.

I felt Berry Gordy, Temptations, Jackson 5, Marvin Gaye & Smokey Robinson were very good. Smokey even looked a bit like the real thing! Good voices, especially Berry who isn't known for his singing. However I was disappointed Stevie Wonder was right at the end of the show with 2 songs before we had the finale. So many familiar Motown tunes were missing. Who is Teena Marie? She certainly isn't a Motown name I've ever heard of, as well as some songs I've not heard before from Motown. Should have had more 4 Tops instead & familiar tunes like 'Reach out' or 'Tracks of my tears' as well as other Motown hits.

So as a Motown fan I'm really 50/50.


There's two ways to judge this show. On the merit of the music and the performers, it's wonderful - and the guy who played Berry Gordy was out of this world. Like, he's seriously good; I haven't heard chops like his in a long time. But if we're looking at the credibility of the story...well, Berry was a songwriter, not a singer, and though this show was based on his autobiography, it was felt too narcissistic and convoluted in places to be taken seriously. So if you know much about the Motown story, this is a pretty hard pill to swallow. Just wash it down with a cold glass of indifference, and you'll be fine.

Staff Writertastemaker

I enjoyed the show.. There are some outstanding performances (especially one of the female cast that plays several roles starting with dancing in the street, wish I knew her name, total star) and the Berry Gordy charecter has a cracking voice.


Annoyingly the Diana Ross character grates a little and there are so odd parts to the show (including one where Diana Ross pulls random people from the audience to sing a few lines- wayyy too risky.

With Motown you know there is going to be hit after hit, and it certainly doesn't disappoint, they seem to cram in dozens of classics.

We went in its first week and so its a little unfair to judge fully but it certainly felt like the performances warmed up after the first bog group number. There a some things I would like to think will be ironed out- for example its not clear if its a sing-along-show and because of that we had  the worst drunk mum singing along all the through... 


Anyway its fun, if you dont take it too seriously you'll have a blast!


It is a great show with a fantastic cast! 

The atmosphere is so positive and joyful that I can only highly recommend it to everyone. 


The clue is in the title - Musical.

As a play, it's thin, clumsy, unconvincing nonsense: a bland, confused hagiography of Motown founder Berry Gordy.

As a musical, it's a heartwarming, foot-tapping, singalong triumph. The performances are outstanding, including the brilliant band. Cedric Neal's Gordy guides us commandingly through the jam-packed repertoire, a juke box on steroids. And, to be honest, what matters more than the music? Over he last decades I've been to so many commercial hit musicals where I struggle to remember more than one mediocre song. The ability to combine an inspiring story with memorable, heart-stopping music was lost after West Side Story, Porgy & Bess and My Fair Lady. The tat that was Rice Webber never reached the foothills of those mountainous achievements.

So let's just look for the music and unashamedly wallow in the nostalgia and glory. That's all Motown - The Musical promises and delivers In full.

I confess that I only ever owned two Motown (Tamla Motown in the UK) records, both by Steve Wonder. Motown, I thought, was never really my music. Yet it was. To my surprise I knew and was moved by every song. I was swept up by the fire and energy of what had been the musical backdrop to my childhood and youth. These were - are - excellent songs. Within minutes I was foot-tapping and clapping along to the driving music as enthusiastically as the most committed Motown fan.

It is an unmissable, fabulous night out.


Thank you Time Out I learnt about this show reading you and I found it is such a great performance ! And the cultural and historical context is well presented

The day after i was listening all these old standards

I will recommend this show to all my friends. I must confess I am 51 but my son 10 years old loved it also -

Catherine

Tastemaker

A musical where story and character development is put on the back-burner, Motown is all about the music and celebrating the stars of one of music's most infamous eras.


With characters such as The Temptations, The Four Tops, Diana Ross, Stevie Wonder and Marvin Gaye taking to centre stage, the performers bring some of Motown's best hits to life, and you can't help but tap your toe, clap your hands and get up and boogie. Some people enjoy it so much that they will attempt to sing along, sometimes out of time and tune, but this is all part of parcel of the jukebox musical experience.The storyline, although true and interesting, is weak and is raced through at such a pace, by the second half, you just want them to drop it and get back to singing. Furthermore, the array of characters means it is hard to emotionally invest in any. But this show isn't about that, it is a celebration of the music and that is executed to perfection. 


One of the highlights is a battle of the bands with The Temptations and The Four Tops where their best hits are mashed up, the quality of vocals and dancing is fantastic. The little boy that portrays Michael Jackson is sensational and has a very bright future ahead of him. 


Without a doubt, Motown is a great night out and you can't help to hum the tunes on the tube home. Grab a ticket, get your dancing shoes on, and enjoy some incredible performers from across the pond. 


Tastemaker

A musical made up of all the massive songs that are guaranteed to get you up and dancing on a night out!  The story line wasn't the best but that isn't what you are there to see and it still links the songs and creates a timeline nicely.  The costumes are fantastic, the set is simple but effective and the voices are phenomenal.  Definitely one to go see whilst it is still on the West End! 

Staff Writer

The show started slow and fast- basically went from song to song (so fast!) and I had no idea what was going on and what the story was (slow). Once the show got into the swing of things and moved a long in good speed, I loved it! 


100% amazing singers! Cedric Neal (Berry Gordy) and Sifiso Mazibuko (Marvin Gaye) were incredable and gave me goosebumps each time they sung. I also loved Charl Brown (Smokey Robinson) and Lucy St. Louis (Diana Ross) were fantastic also. The overall performance of all was so good. I'd easily watch the show again, if only to hear such amazing vocals and see great actors on stage. Loved it! 

Staff Writer

A thoroughly enjoyable night out. It wasn't entirely clear from the get-go whether the show would purely be a compilation of performances, but once the story set in the flow swiftly followed. Berry Gordy was outstanding. Expect a crowd keen to sing along, regardless of ability, but this is perhaps unsurprising given the level of affection felt for most of the songs.


A thoroughly enjoyable evening. 

I watched it in preview so there are a few things that need to be ironed out and I thought the first 15 minutes were a bit shaky. It was almost as if they hadn't warmed their voices, plus timing was out for the Four Tops.

That said, it definitely grew on me.

 

The story line is weak but the audience around us were loving the Motown jukebox and they certainly rattle through the hits. Just pray that you don't sit next to a group of people who feel they have to prove that they're true Motown Fans and sing through the whole performance - We had it in stereo pretty much the entire way through. 


As a pure Jukebox musical it's no Jersey Boys and I think that's where the issue with it for me and not giving it a stronger review. It's like they bombard you with the hits and no story line. It's only after around 30 minutes do they really try to sell you in to the Motown story. It's kind of the wrong way around and they don't combine the story well enough with the music.


Still I had a good time and that's what Jukebox musicals are about right?



Saw the show on 11th February. Very disappointing. Cheap unimaginative sets and a disjointed production with very variable standard of singing. These are big songs well known and if you are going to recreate them it has to be perfect. It wasn't, neither was the "synchronised" dancing that the Four Tops and Temptations were known for. The guy playing Stevie Wonder came on with an outfit two sizes too big and couldn't sing....and this was the finale.

Best performance was by "Marvin Gaye". Exceptionally moving version of What's Going On.