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Stars converge again ­in Pittsburgh CLO's 'Million Dollar Quartet'

Mary Pickels
| Wednesday, Aug. 2, 2017, 9:00 p.m.
The Tony Award-winning musical “Million Dollar Quartet,” a Pittsburgh CLO production being staged Aug. 8 to 13 at Pittsburgh’s Benedum Center.
The Tony Award-winning musical “Million Dollar Quartet,” a Pittsburgh CLO production being staged Aug. 8 to 13 at Pittsburgh’s Benedum Center.

In an unlikely jam session blending country and rock 'n roll one night in 1956, the men who individually gave us "Suspicious Minds," "A Boy Named Sue," "Great Balls of Fire" and "Honey Don't" crooned together in a night of musical history recorded by Sun Records' owner Sam Phillips.

The story of that night is told in the Tony Award-winning musical "Million Dollar Quartet," a Pittsburgh CLO production being staged Aug. 8 to 13 at Pittsburgh's Benedum Center .

James Snyder (Elvis Presley), Derek Keeling (Johnny Cash), Martin Kaye (Jerry Lee Lewis), Billy Finn (Carl Perkins) and Christopher Grant (Phillips), re-create the night of Dec. 4, when the four musical superstars — who didn't always see eye to eye — nonetheless converged in Memphis to create something special.

These well-known talents blending their voices may have been one of the first of what many artists now commonly refer to as "side projects," albeit for one night — and a private performance — only.

Music fans and history buffs alike will gain insight into both the music and the wider societal changes happening at the time.

Expect to hear hits like "Blue Suede Shoes," "Walk the Line," "Folsom Prison Blues," "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On" and "Hound Dog" — and try to resist the urge to twist and shout in your seat.

Details: 412-456-6666 or

Mary Pickels is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at 724-836-5401 or or via Twitter @MaryPickels.

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