Northampton Press

Saturday, June 6, 2020

Quartet to rock State

Wednesday, January 22, 2014 by ELIZABETH OUELLETTE Special to The Press in Focus

"Come over baby, whole lot of shakin' goin' on" at the State Theatre for the Arts, 453 Northampton St., Easton, for the national tour of the Broadway smash, "Million Dollar Quartet," 7 p.m. Jan. 22.

The Tony award-winning musical was inspired by the real-life events of Dec. 4, 1956, the night that Elvis Presley, Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash and Jerry Lee Lewis met and jammed at Sun Records studio, Memphis, Tenn.

"Million Dollar Quartet" imagines what might have transpired at the serendipitous event, an all-star jam session, as the Gods of Rock 'n' Roll played together for the first and only time.

Jamie Balliet, Senior Vice President of Marketing at the State, believes "Million Dollar Quartet" is a perfect fit for the State Theatre audience.

"First, it's a Broadway hit," says Balliet, "which speaks to our Broadway audience, and secondly, the Oldies stars portrayed in the musical will be a hit with our Oldies crowd, who love shows like our the 'Elvis Bash.' It's a perfect combination for our audiences who love both Broadway and Oldies."

Oldies chart-toppers such as "Blue Suede Shoes," "Fever," "That's All Right" "Hound Dog" and "Folsom Prison Blues" are featured in this rock 'n' roll musical.

"Million Dollar Quartet," directed by Eric Shaeffer, who is originally from Berks County, features accomplished singers whose performances bring each beloved icon to life along with the excitement of a Broadway-style stage show.

A passionate audience for Broadway shows exists in the Valley. Balliet affirms that the State goes out of its way to please area Broadway fans.

"We like to bring about four or five Broadway shows to the State each year," says Balliet.

"We look at popularity, how successful they are, the tour audience and then our audience, and see what fits. Just like every show, we want the performance to be both successful and relevant," Balliet says.