The Color Purple – Digital Concert features reflections and performances from the cast and creative members of the 2019 Made at Leicester Curve and Birmingham Hippodrome co-production. This digital concert was recorded remotely over the Summer and commissioned to mark Black History Month.
Directed by Tinuke Craig with Musical Direction and Piano by Alex Parker, the concert includes seven songs from the show including Brown Betty, African Homeland, The Color Purple and the stunning I’m here. In between songs we have cast and creatives talking about how important the show is, how it tackles many issues, especially those of which black women have had to go through and in some ways, still are. About the coming together of people and finding the strength within, and within your community to rise up and be strong.
The Color Purple is based on the novel written by Alice Walker, with the book for the show written by Marsha Norman. Music and lyrics by Brenda Russell, Allee Willis and Stephen Bray. The story follows the life of Celie, played by T’Shan Williams, over numerous decades. Suffering sexual abuse, physical abuse, loss and grief. Because of everything that happens to her, she doesn’t feel worthy but throughout she figures out she is deserving, beautiful and that she matters. The music of the Color Purple gives a voice to the hundreds of Celie’s that were and still are.
The whole concert is stunning, with killer vocals and perfect harmonies but a couple of songs really hit you in the feels and you get the emotion, the hurt and the love.
What About Love by Rosemary Annabelle Nkrumah and Williams is just beautiful, with rich tones and harmonies that made my heart smile and Williams’ delivery of I’m Here is emotional but uplifting. You feel every note she sings, and you can see the story on her face. The final song, The Color Purple, rounds up the concert perfectly, bringing a sense of community, which resonates on so many levels.
Sound mixed by Chris Mock and Edited by Ben Hewis, bringing a smooth concert together very well.
A beautiful concert with such heart and meaning.
Reviewer: Damian Riverol
Reviewed: 9th October 2020
North West End UK Rating: ★★★★★