“In ten minutes I knew I had my next star.” Beautifully produced, Million Dollar Quartet opened Tuesday March 27 at the State Theatre. The production was highly successful at bringing the audience back to December 4, 1956 when Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee lewis, Elvis Presley and Carl Perkins got together for a “jam session” at Sun Records studio. The night that held history and fame, they played together “for the first and only time.” My attention was pulled immediately into the show. The little recording studio that filled the stage created a welcoming feel. Anyone who is looking for richness should attend Million Dollar Quartet. Ending with a standing ovation and Fluke, the original drummer, played a song with the cast. Not only did I feel as if I were part of the original memory but my own personal memories of enjoying hits by Johnny Cash and the others quickly flowed. I briefly revisited many memories of listening to Johnny Cash in the car with my family and five year old brother begging for more, just like the audience.
Million Dollar Quartet gave brought the mood of the “good old days.” The costumes of simple clothing from the 1950’s was fantastic and never once took away from the production or movement of the performers. The guitars fit every song, the instruments and live music throughout the performance only enhanced the feeling of being in the 1956 memory.
Million dollar quartet showcases the best impersonators of the four historical artists. Elvis, played by Cody Slaughter, was not only believable through voice and script but through costume and look. The performance of Martin Kaye, who acted as Jerry Lee Lewis was outstanding. He brought liveliness and spunk to his character. The connection between the two and the piano is unbelievable, he stood on it, danced on it, played backwards on it, and sang with it. All the performers brought a fantastic stage presence. Each performer brought the liveliness of the famous artist assigned. The show started off with “Blue Suede Shoes,” a hit that immediately grabbed the audience’s attention. If you want talent, experience and memories I would Highly recommend attending Million Dollar Quartet.
The very end of the production is unheard of. Attending a play you do not expect to feel as if you are at a concert but on the contrary that is the reality for Million Dollar Quartet. I was drawn back into a generic feeling of a concert when bright lights, shiny jackets and the downstage section began. The hip, bright stage set up and filled with an abundant, outstanding energy created a lively mood that kept people on their toes. Like the rest of the production the audience attention was glued to the stage but on the contrary for the last twenty-five minutes our weight was on our feet.
Besides mild language this production is great for anyone who can sit through a 90 minute production. I highly recommend attending this production if you have any idea or knowledge of Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee lewis, Elvis Presley and Carl Perkins. Memories, laughter, talent and inspiration is a given when you attend, Million Dollar Quartet.