Fringe Review: Movin’ Melvin Brown: Chuck Berry Lives

Movin’ Melvin Brown  celebrates the life and music of one the creators of Rock n’ Roll.


Presented by Movin’ Melvin Brown
Reviewed 14 March 2018

Movin’ Melvin Brown  celebrates the life and music of one the creators of Rock n’ Roll. The performance was dazzling, and not only because of his shiny red suit. Chuck Berry was certainly living large at the German Club last night.

Brown pays tribute to Chuck Berry not just by singing and dancing in the style made famous by the legendary star but by bringing the music to life through his stellar performance. Along the way he reminds we older fans, and introduces the younger ones, to the story of Chuck Berry. How he travelled across America builing his unique musical style from influences including gospel music, black American R&B music and white American country music, culminating in an appearance on American Bandstand where all those influences came together in Rock n’ Roll music.

From the opening song  Memphis Tennesee Brown had the audience up and dancing. It’s hard to resist with such a rocking beat and a fabulous example in front of you. Not only does he sing brilliantly he is also an amazing tap dancer, to the extent that he can provide his own rhythm backing to his songs! Brown moves effortlessly through many styles from rocking like Chuck Berry to the classic dance style of legends such as Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly. His energy is amazing!

The tight backing band, with Jango on lead guitar, Alex on drums, Nicki on bass guitar and Jack on keyboards provided the perfect accompaniment, as did manager Francesca Sansalone on back-up vocals. Jango really showed off his skills on the guitar in Johnny B Goode which, as perhaps the best known of all Chuck Berry’s hits, was saved for the end.

We were also treated to three of Brown’s own compositions, my favourite of which was Three Ladies. The medley he performed around  Reelin’ and  Rockin’,with a nod to Chuck Berry’s fondness for the ladies with snippets from Nadine, Oh, Carol and Maybelline, was greatly appreciated by the audience. The finale had all the audience up on their feet movin’ and a groovin’ to  There Was A Time When We Used To Dance and doing The Twist, The Swim, The Monkey and many more I’d forgotten all about.

Put on your dancing shoes and get along to enjoy a great show.

Reviewed by Jan Kershaw

Rating out of 5: 5

Venue:  Showroom One at The GC at The German Club 223 Flinders St, Adelaide
Season:  15,16,17 March 9pm
Duration:  70 mins
Tickets:  $$35.00 to $39.00 Conc: $34.00 to $35.00


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