Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations, the brand-new musical that follows the astonishing lives of The Temptations, Five Guys. One Dream. And a Sound That Would Make Music History. The extraordinary journey the Temptations had to take from the rundown streets of Detroit all the way to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The band members have always been known for their choreography, distinct harmonies, and dress style and the show doesn’t hold back! After breaking house records at both Berkeley Rep and The Kennedy Center, written by three‑time Obie Award winner Dominique Morisseau, directed by two‑time Tony Award winner Des McAnuff, and featuring choreography by Tony nominee Sergio Trujillo.
Ain’t Too Proud Tickets:
“Five Guys. One Dream. And a Sound That Would Make Music History.”
“Slick coordinated dance moves and charisma to burn.”
“Ain’t Too Proud, a finger-snapping, hand-clapping new jukebox musical.”
Ain’t Too Proud – The Life and Times of the Temptations is the heartbreaking story of attrition. We watch as the core lineup of the original Temptations is whittled down to the last man standing. The groundbreaking heights they hit and how personal and political conflicts threatened to tear the group apart as the United States fell into civil unrest. This thrilling story of brotherhood, family, loyalty and betrayal is set to the beat of the group’s treasured hits, including “My Girl,” “Just My Imagination,” “Get Ready,” “Papa Was a Rolling Stone” and so many more. Ultimately, though, it’s the music that’s the sole survivor. And that’s what’s being celebrated here — the collective miracle of a blissfully silken sound forged out of clashing egos, many misfires and life-wrecking hard work into numbers that keep playing in our memories.
The Cast are, in addition to Mr. Baskin, James Harkness as Paul Williams, Jawan M. Jackson as a Melvin Franklin who talks as well as sings in a thundering bass, Jeremy Pope of “Choir Boy,” who here plays Eddie Kendricks and a smoking hot Ephraim Sykes as David Ruffin. We meet them first as a team, singing “The Way You Do the Things You Do,” the Temptations hit from 1964, before Otis shepherds us back to the group’s starting point. So in addition to seeing the Temptations on and back stage, and in the recording studio, with mentors that include Smokey Robinson playing Christian Thompson and Norman Whitfield playing Mr. Manning. We are given quick-sketch glimpses of the grim personal and social problems that derail them. With an amazing set by Robert Brill, lighted by Howell Binkley and with projections by Peter Nigrini, neatly balances grit and glamour throughout. All working together to bring the untold story of this legendary quintet to irresistible life on Broadway. Get ready — ’cause here they come!
The Temptations were and still are one of the most successful groups in popular music history, The Temptations achieved fame recording for Motown Records during the 1960s and 1970s. The group has cycled through no fewer than 24 members over the years, and that interchangeability becomes the subject of Dominique Morisseau’s book, in which Derrick Baskin, as Temptations founder Otis Williams, talks us through a simplified version of the group’s making and unmaking. The Temptations have continued to delight fans with their choreography, distinct harmonies, and dress style. With their signature dance moves and unmistakable harmonies, they rose to the top of the charts creating an amazing 42 Top Ten Hits with 14 reaching number one. Over the course of their career, the Temptations released four Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles and 14 R&B number-one singles.
“The Temptations are undoubtedly one of the greatest R&B groups of all time.”
Their music has earned three Grammy Awards. The Temptations were the first Motown recording act to win a Grammy Award – for “Cloud Nine” in 1969 and in 2013 received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. Six of the Temptations (Edwards, Franklin, Kendricks, Ruffin, Otis Williams and Paul Williams) were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989. Three classic Temptations songs, “My Girl”, “Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me)”, and “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone”, are among The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll. The Temptations were ranked at number 68 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 100 Greatest Artists of all time.
Ain’t Too Proud Broadway Reviews
“Ain’t Too Proud promotes the virtue of humility, at least when it comes to keeping a team together. Of course, as you watch this latest entry in Broadway’s ever-expanding jukebox musical sweepstakes, you will no doubt find your legs twitching, as if from muscle memory. That’s the urge being translated with such sublime grace by those five natty men on the stage, Platonic ideals of stepping high and looking fine. But it also makes sure that these men never become ciphers. The happy paradox of this group portrait is that everybody gets to be a star.”
– Ben Brantley, New York Times
“Charting the highs and lows of one of the cornerstone acts of Motown Records – indeed, in 1969 The Temptations became the first Motown act ever to win a Grammy Award – Ain’t Too Proud tells the story behind the group’s meteoric rise from humble Detroit beginnings to global fame and also the personal conflicts within the group that jeopardized it all. The musical is, of course, brimming with their greatest hits that have transcended generations, from “Get Ready” to “Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me),” from “You’re My Everything” to “My Girl,” and from “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone” to “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg.”
– New York Theatre Guide