"X Factor" Winner to Join West End Company of Memphis | Playbill

News "X Factor" Winner to Join West End Company of Memphis Matt Cardle, winner of the seventh series of the U.K.'s "The X Factor" in 2010, is to join the West End company of Memphis the Musical, beginning performances July 6 at the Shaftesbury Theatre. He takes over from Killian Donnelly who originated the role in London, and is departing the show to star in the London production of Kinky Boots.

He joins Beverley Knight, who has extended her contract as club singer Felicia Farrell through Oct. 2015. The show will now end its scheduled West End run Oct. 31, with plans now in progress for a major tour to follow.

In a press statement, Cardle has commented, "I'm thrilled to be making my acting and West End debut in Memphis. From the first time I saw the show I felt I had a real connection with the character of Huey. It's no secret that I worked for many years before my breakthrough as a musician. I started my first band when I was 12 years old and spent at least 15 years recording albums and sending demos to record companies before finally having my voice heard. It was the united love from family and friends, similar to that at the heart of the Memphis story, that saw me through. I am truly honoured to be sharing the stage with the incredible Beverley Knight, I’ve admired her work for such a long time and can’t wait to get started in the show."

Cardle, who won "The X Factor" in front of a TV audience exceeding 19.1m viewers, is now a multi-platinum selling recording artist. His debut single "When We Collide"/"Many Of Horror," originally recorded by Biffy Clyro, sold over 1 million copies in the U.K. alone. The song spent three weeks at #1 and was nominated for Best British Single at the 2011 Brit Awards. This was followed by the Top 10 hit Run For Your Life and platinum selling debut album. To date he has sold over 2.2 million records in the UK across three co-written Top 10 albums; "Letters" (2011), "The Fire" (2012) and "Porcelain" (2013). He is currently completing his 4th studio album, due for release later this year.

Also continuing in the cast are Rolan Bell as Delray, Tyrone Huntley as Gator, Claire Machin as Gladys, Jason Pennycooke as Bobby and Mark Roper as Mr. Simmons, with Keisha Atwell, Arielle Campbell, Mark Carroll, Joseph Davenport, Momar Diagne, Carly Mercedes Dyer, Kimmy Edwards, Hillary Elk, Laura Ellis, Charlotte Gorton, Yasmin Harrison, Benjamin Harrold, Waylon Jacobs, Rachel John, Dean Maynard, Devon McKenzie-Smith, Tim Newman, Simon Ray-Harvey, Jon Robyns, Ashley Rumble, Kyle Seeley, Helen Siveter, Dawnita Smith and Alex Thomas.

To book tickets, contact the box office on 020 7379 5399, or visit memphisthemusical.com

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