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Motown The Musical

About the Show Less...

The Tony Award nominated hit Motown The Musical brings its tale of Motown founder Berry Gordy, and the star-stuffed list of acts he discovered, to the Shaftesbury Theatre. Read More >

The Tony Award nominated hit Motown The Musical brings its tale of Motown founder Berry Gordy, and the star-stuffed list of acts he discovered, to the Shaftesbury Theatre.

Motown The Musical follows the legendary career of Berry Gordy and the creation of his musical empire, Motown Records. The story begins in 1983, on the evening of the 25th anniversary celebration of Motown, and Berry Gordy is looking back on his career.

Inspired by his childhood hero, black American boxer Joe Louis, the young Berry dreams big, hoping one day to make people just as happy and proud. After a few years on Detroit’s automobile assembly line, he sets his sights on bringing a socially charged, racially divided country together through the power of music. With an $800 loan from his family, Berry founds a music-making factory, launching the careers of artists including Diana Ross and the Supremes, Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5, Stevie Wonder, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles, Marvin Gaye, The Temptations and more. Motown is born!

Motown The Musical tells the thrilling tale of the man who broke barriers and fought against the odds to define the sound of a generation – complete with the ups and downs of the personal relationships, the professional struggles, and – of course – the music that made history. Discover the story behind the beat that changed minds, touched lives and took the world by storm.

Motown The Musical stars Jay Perry and Natalie Kassanga as Berry Gordy and Diana Ross. David Albury plays Smokey Robinson, with Carl Spencer as Marvin Gaye.

The musical received its world premiere at New York’s Lunt-Fontanne Theatre in April 2013 and was followed by a US national tour that opened to critical acclaim in Chicago in spring 2014. The production is directed by Charles Randolph-Wright with a book by Gordy. The West End production has played at the Shaftesbury Theatre since February 2016, where Gordy, Smokey Robinson and Mary Wilson enjoyed its opening night.

Motown The Musical shows how one label and its roster of legendary artists created the soundtrack that transformed America and gave the world a new musical vocabulary – the Motown Sound. With over 40 classic songs such as My Girl, What’s Going On, Dancing In The Street, I Heard It Through The Grapevine and Ain’t No Mountain High Enough, this explosive event is the next chapter of Motown’s incredible history – and an experience you’ll never forget.

Looking for more about Motown The Musical? Check out our ‘Everything You Need To Know About Motown The Musical in London’ guide!


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Age Recommendation: 8+ i

carl spencer david albury jay perry motown the musical natalie kassanga shaftesbury theatre

Important Dates & Timing

Previews From: 11/02/2016

Opening Night: 8/03/2016

Closing Night: 20/04/2019

Running time: 2h40, inc. interval

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For ticketing information, please visit the show's website.

Cast & Creative


Berry Gordy - Jay Perry

Diana Ross - Natalie Kassanga

Smokey Robinson - David Albury

Marvin Gaye - Carl Spencer

Young Berry/Stevie/Michael - Nana Agyemanbediako, Tumo Reetsang, Cruz Lee-Ojo

Ensemble - Chanice Alexandra-Burnett, KM Drew Boateng, Timothy Benjamin, Ryan Carter, Ricardo Castro, Amandla Elynah, Livvy Evans, Segun Fawole, Angela Marie Hurst, Cameron Bernard Jones, Cleopatra Joseph, Duane Lamonte, Nathan Lorainey-Dineen, Mireia Mambo, Matt Overfield, Adam Philpott, Ainsley Hall Ricketts, Lawrence Rowe, Nate Simpson, Jaime Tait, Kyle Turner, Anna Van Ruiten, Cherelle Williams, Lashane Williams, Michael Woolston-Thomas, Jayme-Lee Zanoncelli, Mitchell Zhangazha


Director - Charles Randolph-Wright

Producer - Kevin McCollum, Doug Morris, Berry Gordy & Adam Spiegel

Choreographer - Patricia Wilcox & Warren Adams

Costume - Emilio Sosa

Lighting Designer - Natasha Katz

Set Designer - David Korins

Sound - Peter Hylenski

About Shaftesbury Theatre

210 Shaftesbury Avenue, London WC2H 8DP

Unlike film, there is currently no official age classification organisation for theatre. All age recommendations are subjective and should be interpreted as guidelines unless otherwise stated. It's the responsibility of the patron to judge the show’s suitability in advance of purchase. We recommend contacting us at if you are in any doubt.