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MRT 2012/13 Season

Gutenberg! The Musical!  •  Assassins  •  The Mountaintop  •  Blues in the Night  •  The Diary of Anne Frank •  A Christmas Carol  •  Sense and Sensibility
Mind Over Milwaukee  •  How The World Began  •  Rep Lab  •  Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash  •  Clybourne Park  •  A Raisin In the Sun  •  One Night With Janis Joplin

Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash

“A fabulous piece of entertainment. A musical of grandeur and perfected style that offers endless delight. See it.”

The Buffalo News


» Learn More Before You Go
» Download/Print (.pdf)

Created by Richard Maltby, Jr.
Conceived by William Meade
Orchestrations by Steven Bishop and Jeff Lisenby
March 1 – May 5
Stackner Cabaret

From the iconic songbook of Johnny Cash comes this unique musical about love and faith, struggle and success, rowdiness and redemption, and home and family. More than two dozen classic hits—including “I Walk The Line,” “A Boy Named Sue,” “Folsom Prison Blues,” and the title tune—performed by a multi-talented cast, paint a musical portrait of The Man in Black that promises to be a foot-stompin’, crowd-pleasin’ salute to a uniquely American legend!

Video Preview

Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash photo gallery

Photo Gallery

Mark Clements

Prior to coming to America, I’d never paid much attention to country music. But it’s now become a style that I absolutely love. Johnny Cash is so influential to so many musicians across so many genres, and Ring of Fire treats us to all of those legendary, great songs, while giving us a snapshot into his life. It’s a celebration of his soul-stirring music—really good stuff!


» Learn more about Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash
   from Artistic Director Mark Clements


Video Preview: Behind the Scenes

* Member of Actors’ Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers in the United States.

Trenna Barnes (Performer) – Trenna Barnes is happy to be making her Milwaukee Rep debut with Ring of Fire. She has also performed the role of June Carter at Denver Center Theatre Company, Arkansas Repertory Theatre, Cabrillo Music Theatre, Fox Riverside Performing Arts and Casa Mañana Theatre. Trenna also performed as the lead singer/main songwriter for the all-girl band Cowboy Crush (Curb Records), and has appeared with Charlie Daniels, Huey Lewis, Kid Rock, Big & Rich, Jason Aldean, Sugarland, Miranda Lambert, Reba McEntire, Trace Adkins, Kellie Pickler, Alan Jackson, Dierks Bentley and Gretchen Wilson. Her TV credits include: Country Music Television, Great American Country, NBC’s Today Show, Budweiser Shootout (NASCAR); Pike’s Peak race Opening Ceremonies (NASCAR); Special Olympics World Winter Games Closing Ceremonies (NBC-TV) and The Geoffrey Bodine Bobsled Challenge (ESPN and SPEED). Radio credits include: Tony Stewart Show, G. Gordon Liddy Show and the Big D & Bubba Show. Radio performances include Billboard Reporting stations, R&R Reporting stations and Europe’s HotDisc Chartwhere Trenna’s “Hillbilly Nation” maintained a number one spot for seven weeks. www.TrennaBarnes.com.   -Top-


Eddie Clendening (Performer) – Eddie Clendening brings with him well over a decade of stage experience. He has played alongside scores of original Rock & Roll and Country pioneers from the ’50s and ’60s, and toured as a featured guitarist/ vocalist in several internationally-known combos. His band, Eddie Clendening & the Blue Ribbon Boys, are in heavy demand all across the United States, Europe, Asia and the Subcontinent. His theater credits include originating and starring as Elvis Presley in the Broadway musical Million Dollar Quartet from its beginning in Chicago to its closing in New York as well as its national tour. www.eddieclendening.com.   -Top-


Jason Edwards (Performer/Assistant Director) – Broadway credits include: Ring of Fire (original cast and recording). Off- Broadway: Of Mice and Men and Johnny Guitar (original cast and recording). Directing credits: Denver Center Theatre Company, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Virginia Stage Company, Arkansas Repertory Theatre, Maine State Music Theatre, La Mirada Theater, FCLO Music Theatre and Cabrillo Music Theatre. Regional credits include leading roles at Denver Center Theatre Company, Cincinnati Playhouse In The Park, Arizona Theatre Company, Actors Theatre of Louisville, Marriott Theatre, Barter Theatre, Northlight Theatre and Merrimack Repertory Theatre. Awards: Florida Theatre Award for The Music Man, Chicago Jeff Award nomination for The Will Rogers Follies and Los Angeles Ovation Award nomination for Ring of Fire. Originally from North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, Jason now resides in New York City. He is pleased to be working once again with Richard Maltby, and to be making his Milwaukee Rep debut.   -Top-


David Miles Keenan (Performer) – David Miles Keenan has been playing music since he was 8 years old and performing since the age of 12. He performs in his home town of Seattle with several bands in a variety of styles; co-music directed Woody Guthrie’s American Song for the Arizona Theatre Company; was featured instrumentalist in Mama Hated Diesels for The Denver Center for the Performing Arts and he teaches banjo, guitar and mandolin at many camps throughout the summer. He also composes for film and background music, and is currently writing a musical with creative partner Nova Karina Devonie. For all things Dave, check out www.davekeenan.com.   -Top-


Mark W. Winchester (Performer) – Mark W. Winchester is a singer, hit songwriter and award-winning upright bass player. He is a founding member of the Planet Rockers (which included the legendary Sonny George and Los Straitjackets’ Eddie Angel), forerunners of Nashville’s roots rock revival. Following his run with The Planet Rockers, Emmylou Harris enlisted Mark W. to “slap” the upright bass in her Grammy Award-winning all acoustic band, the Nash Ramblers. Mark W. also played bass on the multi-million selling, Grammy-winning, “Jump, Jive, and Wail,” by former Stray Cats frontman Brian Setzer, while a full-time member of the Brian Setzer Orchestra. Mark W. is featured singing his own composition “Rooster Rock” on Setzer’s album Ignition. An accomplished songwriter, Mark W.’s song “Would I?” was covered by Randy Travis, and ranked in the top 20 of the Billboard Country Charts. Mark W. just released a new CD called Upright. www.cdbaby.com/markwwinchester.   -Top-


The Creators

Richard Maltby Jr

Richard Maltby, Jr. – Conceived/directed two Tony Award-winning musicals: Ain’t Misbehavin’ (1978 Tony, N.Y. Drama Critics, Outer Critics and Drama Desk Awards; Tony Award for Best Director); Fosse (1999 Tony, Outer Critics and Drama Desk Awards); as well as Ring of Fire (2006). With composer DavidShire: director/lyricist: Baby, (1983, book by Sybille Pearson; seven Tony nominations); lyricist: Big, (1996, book by John Weidman; Tony nomination: Best Score); lyricist/conceiver: Take Flight (2010, book by John Weidman); with Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schonberg, co-lyricist: Miss Saigon (Evening Standard Award 1990; Tony nomination: Best Score 1991); co-book writer/lyricist: The Pirate Queen, 2007; director: The Story of My Life, 2009; director/co-lyricist: Song & Dance, (1986, Tony Award for star Bernadette Peters). Off-Broadway credits include: director/lyricist for Starting Here, Starting Now (1977, Grammy nomination) and Closer than Ever (1989, two Outer Critics Circle Awards: Best Musical, Best Score), both written with composer David Shire. Regional theater credits include: director, Mask (2008, Pasadena Playhouse) and director, The 60’s Project (2006, Goodspeed). Film credits include: Screenplay for Miss Potter (2007, Christopher Award, best screenplay). He contributes crossword puzzles to Harper’s Magazine. Richard is the son of a well-known orchestra leader and has five children: Nicholas, David, Jordan, Emily and Charlotte.   -Top-

William Meade (Conceived by), began his career as a musician. He has been a featured soloist with numerous orchestras, including the Zurich Philharmonic, Prague Philharmonic and Jacksonville Symphony. He has produced concerts throughout the U.S. and Europe with artists ranging from Arlo Guthrie to BB King. Television: The Miss America Pageant, The Super Bowl Half-Time Show, Sex and The City, Love Monkey and Sesame Street. On Broadway, he has been involved with more than 50 musicals. He is a Grammy-nominated record producer with a wide range of theatrical releases to his credit, from Hello, Dolly! with Carol Channing, to Elegies by William Finn.   -Top-

Steven Bishop (Orchestrations), has composed three musicals and has written more than 50 revues. He is the arranger/orchestrator for the demo of the upcoming Broadway show, Genius. Prior to these positions, he was the musical supervisor and computer programmer for the national tour of The Pajama Game, and was the conductor for the first national tour of Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. Among his many New York credits, Mr. Bishop was the conductor/musical director for the Off-Broadway run of Bingo! , for which he orchestrated, produced and mixed the original cast CD. Other credits include orchestrating/arranging Riverview (Goodman Theatre), Arthur (Marriott Theatre), Evita (Jupiter Theatre) and the national tours of Ziegfeld, Gypsy, Grand Hotel and Jolson – The Musical (U.S. Premiere).   -Top-

Jeff Lisenby

Jeff Lisenby (Musical Director) – Jeff Lisenby performed in Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash on Broadway, and with the touring shows of Wicked and Jersey Boys. He has toured with Boots Randolph and Brenda Lee, and has accompanied Pavarotti, Blake Shelton, Dolly Parton, Lee Greenwood and Donna Summer. Lisenby twice won silver medals in international accordion championships. iTunes carries his jazz accordion CD A Spy in Tortuga. Jeff instructs singers for cruise ship shows, and he is happy to get to travel the world. Lisenby plays on many recordings, including the Grammy-winning Songs from the Neighborhood: The Music of Mister Rogers.   -Top-


Megan Truscott (Scenic Designer) – Megan Truscott is a Chicago-based scenic designer. This is her second show at The Rep’s Stackner Cabaret after recently designing Blues in the Night. Recent works include Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (Bailiwick Chicago), The Happy Elf and The Hobbit (Pennsylvania Youth Theatre) and Next To Normal (TheatreSquared). She is a graduate of The Theatre School at DePaul University. Megan would like to thank her family and friends for their support and the incredible staff of The Rep for yet another amazing show.   -Top-

Holly Payne (Costume Designer) – Currently the Costume Director at The Rep, Holly graduated with an MFA in costume design and technology from the University of Arkansas. Holly has also designed at Skylight Music Theatre, Milwaukee Chamber Theatre, Renaissance Theaterworks, Milwaukee Shakespeare, University of Tulsa, American Players Theatre, Florentine Opera, Delaware Theatre Company, First Stage Children’s Theater, 11th Hour Theatre Company in Philadelphia and Theatre Squared in Fayetteville, AK. Some of her favorite designs at The Rep have been Lombardi in the Quadracci Powerhouse, The Bomb-itty of Errors in the Stackner Cabaret and Speaking in Tongues in the Stiemke Studio. Thanks to The Rep’s fantastic costume shop for all their great work and much love to ACB for being a fantastic husband.   -Top-

Lee Fiskness (Lighting Designer) – Lee Fiskness is a freelance lighting designer based in Chicago. Here at The Rep he has designed Song Man Dance Man, Liberace! and Soultime: At The Apollo. He has designed with Lookingglass Theatre Company, Northlight Theatre, American Blues Theater, About Face Theatre, American Music Theatre, Two River Theater Company in New Jersey and others. He has also worked at the Santa Fe Opera as a Lighting Supervisor for ten years.   -Top-

Ray Nardelli (Sound Designer) – Past Milwaukee Rep credits include: Radio Golf, The Government Inspector, Trouble In Mind, The Night Is A Child, Cyrano de Bergerac and The Story. Off-Broadway credits include Lookingglass Alice at The New Victory Theater. Regional theaters include Steppenwolf Theatre Company, McCarter Theatre, Long Wharf Theatre, Court Theatre, Hartford Stage, Congo Square Theatre Company, Buffalo Arena Stage, Alley Theatre, American Theater Company, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Northlight Theatre, Drury Lane Theatre, Lookingglass Theatre Company, Victory Gardens Theater, Meadow Brook Theatre, The Gift Theatre Company, American Girl Theatre (New York, Chicago), Skylight Opera Theatre and Wright State University Theatre. Ray has over 400 film, DVD and computer game credits worldwide. His memberships include USA #829, ASCAP and IATSE #2.   -Top-

Emily Maltby (Choreographer) – Emily Maltby is thrilled to be working on Ring of Fire (with her dear old dad!). As a director and choreographer recent credits include: Fiction in Photographs (New World Stages); Eastland (Lookingglass Theatre Company); A Wind in the Willows Christmas (Two River Theater Company); Call My Name (Smithsonian Folklife Festival); 42nd Street and Ragtime (Northwestern University). She has also worked with the Signature Center, CAP21, Stage Entertainment and Goodspeed Musicals, among others. She is a proud graduate of Northwestern University.   -Top-

Sandy Ernst (Casting Director), is The Rep’s Associate Artistic Director, the Artistic Intern Company Director, and has served as The Rep’s Casting Director for over a decade; she formerly served as a member of the directing staff and as the Production Stage Manager at American Players Theatre.   -Top-

Becca Lindsay (Stage Manager), returns to The Rep after starting her professional career with an internship there in the 2005/06 Season; credits include Sense and Sensibility, Next to Normal, Half Life and Guys on Ice.   -Top-

Briana J. Fahey (Stage Manager), is in her tenth season at The Rep; her most recent Rep credits include A Christmas Carol and Assassins and her regional credits include California Shakespeare Theatre, Utah Shakespeare Festival, Magic Theatre and Center REPertory Theatre.   -Top-

Kaitlin Kitzmiller (Stage Management Intern), a graduate of the University of Nebraska at Omaha, her recent credits include Ballet Nebraska, BravO! National Dance and Talent Competition, SkullDuggery Productions and Nebraska Shakespeare.   -Top-

Learn more about the background of the show and/or the themes explored in this production.

» Johnny Cash Official Website

» The Johnny Cash Project

» Video of Ring of Fire


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Group Tickets
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Group Sales

Running Time
Approximately 2 hrs.

Performance Times
Tuesday: 6:30pm*
Tuesday - Thursday: 7:30pm
Sunday Evening: 7:00pm
Fri/Sat Evening: 8pm
Saturday Matinee: 4pm
Sunday Matinee: 2pm
Wednesday Matinee: 1:30pm
*Once per run otherwise 7:30pm

Recommended Age
10 years and older

Access Date
Audio Described
Sun. March 10, 7pm

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Mark Clements Artistic Director

The Rep is sponsored in part by:

Milwaukee Repertory Theater • Patty & Jay Baker Theater Complex • 108 E Wells Street, Milwaukee WI 53202
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