Experience the Magic of Motown hits
The Motown label boasts a back catalogue like no other, and any tribute show is likely to touch on some of your all-time favourite music. A highly professional show like the Magic of Motown, however, will go as far as to truly invoke the real thing
WITH nine years of touring, and anything up to 150 gigs per year, the Magic of Motown show promises to be a slick nostalgic extravaganza when it hits the Villa Marina’s Royal Hall tomorrow (Friday) evening.
This year marks 50 years of number one hits for the famous US Motown label, and the celebratory show features 36 chart-toppers including the likes of the Supremes, Temptations, Four Tops, Jackson 5 and Stevie Wonder.
Aside from the music and authentic live band, equal care is taken to reproduce the original look and feel of the Motown stars on stage, acknowledging the fact Motown was ahead of its time for carefully controlling artistes’ images for mass market appeal.
Founding member of the show, frontman and choreographer, Andre Lejaune said: ‘We’re looking forward to it, especially going to new and different places like the Isle of Man, and leaving a good impression.’
He added: ‘People need to know more about Motown, there’s so many great names. It’s so great to carry it on, we feel privileged to even emulate them. Not imitate! There’s no point trying to imitate guys like Stevie Wonder.’
Andre, from Florida, USA, said he had always performed Motown before coming to the UK and setting up the show.
‘The crew is a combination, a mix of American and British guys and that is what makes it. We started with 10 shows a year, and it just got bigger,’ he recalled.
‘There are so many tribute acts, but we thought if we do this we have to do it right, and authentic. Like you can’t do The Supremes with just one girl.
‘The girls bring the glamour, the full Motown feel. The people want quality entertainment and when word got out, it took off.’
Andre plays several different roles in the show. Does he alter his performance for each ‘character’?
‘I’m the leading man. I’m a Stevie Wonder man. I also do Lionel Richie and I’m one of the Jackson 5,’ he said. ‘You’ve got to do it right if you’re going to do it, so yeah the Stevie glasses are on to give it the full effect. But then maybe I’ll take them off for the second song so people know it isn’t a parody, it’s about the music.’
Personal highlights of the show?
‘I look forward to the Jacksons, we have such fun with that, with the choreography,’ he said. ‘Of course we’ll mark 50 years and start with the Four Tops. But we have to touch base with all of it, even the late 80s – Lionel was still the man with All Night Long! We don’t go past the 80s though.’
There’s even a chance of having a say in the set list yourself, by contacting the show’s Facebook page.
Andre explained: ‘We have a special request list out, to accommodate people. We do it for every gig.
‘Sometimes if we get a request late we might even do it a capella, like the other week I sang Tears of a Clown solo, as the band hadn’t had time to rehearse it.’
With such obvious reference for the stars he emulates, did Andre ever have the chance to see how they performed in person?
‘Yeah, and I’ve actually been on stage with a few, but they’re just regular people,’ he said. ‘They just have a talent that was seen by the masses.’
Tomorrow’s show starts at 8pm. All tickets are £18.50 and available from the Villa Marina reception, the Sea Terminal Welcome Centre, the box office on 600555, or online at www.villagaiety.com
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Weather for Isle of Man
Thursday 23 May 2013
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