Motown the Musical | Durham Performing Arts Center | Stage | Indy Week
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Motown the Musical 

When: Aug. 1-6 2017
Price: $20-$90

In early 1959, a former boxer named Berry Gordy started a record company in Detroit. He struck chart gold immediately with Barrett Strong's prophetically titled "Money (That's What I Want)" and continued to do so over the next decade. Applying the assembly-line techniques he'd learned while toiling at the local Lincoln-Mercury plant, Gordy grew his label into a hit-maker of mythic proportions. The Motown sound melded the call-and-response of gospel music with an R & B backbeat and a smooth, ear-friendly aesthetic that actively sought and found the upper reaches of the charts. With its tambourine beats, smooth strings, and elegant, immaculately attired singers, such as Diana Ross and Marvin Gaye, the company brought black music to middle America. Sounds tailor-made for a feel-good jukebox musical, right? Well, you can't really go wrong with a soundtrack featuring folks like the Supremes, the Temptations, and the Jackson 5. The story's damned compelling, the music irresistible. —David Klein

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