Video: A Conversation with NINA SIMONE: FOUR WOMEN Actress Toni Martin

Nina Simone: Four Women, runs April 16 – May 12, 2024, in the Quadracci Powerhouse.

By: Apr. 21, 2024
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Toni Martin, who plays Sephronia in “Nina Simone: Four Women,” discusses the production and her history with the Rep in the video here.

Martin made her Rep debut as a young performer in “August Wilson's Joe Turner’s Come and Gone,” and was an Acting Intern in the 2012/13 Season.

Nina Simone: Four Women, runs April 16 – May 12, 2024, in the Quadracci Powerhouse. Written by Christina Ham and directed by Milwaukee native Malkia Stampley, Nina Simone: Four Women is a play with music that Broadway World calls “Entertaining, enlightening, and educational…a stirring portrait of a tortured artist yearning to have her voice heard.”   

The creator of some of our nation’s most powerful Civil Rights anthems, Nina Simone shook the world with her music. After the 1963 bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Simone's tribute song "Four Women" transformed her from gifted pianist to trailblazing activist, charting a new course as an agent of change and healing. Nina Simone: Four Women is a play with music that shines a light on how she found her true calling and gave voice to a movement through impactful and inspirational songs like “Everything Must Change," "To Be Young, Gifted and Black" and “His Eye is on the Sparrow."

Nina Simone: Four Women will be the last play to be performed on the Quadracci Powerhouse stage before Milwaukee Rep breaks ground on the new Associated Bank Theater Center. To honor the historic moment, playwright Christina Ham will attend opening night to celebrate the bright future of the American theater. Her play was programmed as the 2023/24 Season finale because it speaks to the present moment and honors the past, while broadening the horizons of Milwaukee’s richly diverse community.

Nina Simone: Four Women cast features Alexis J Roston as Nina Simone, Matthew Harris as Sam, Gabrielle Lott-Rogers as Sarah, Brittney Mack as Sweet Thing, and Milwaukee native Toni Martin, who first performed at Milwaukee Rep as a child in Joe Turner’s Come and Gone in the 1993/94 Season followed by joining the theater as an Emerging Professional Resident in 2012, as Sephronia.

Nina Simone: Four Women is directed and co-music directed by Malkia Stampley (Nunsense, Milwaukee Rep) with co-music direction and arrangements by Pamela Baskin-Watson, set design by Shaun L. Motley (Fences, American Players Theatre), costume design by Yvonne L. Miranda (Seven Guitars, Milwaukee Rep), lighting design by Jason Lynch (Choir Boy, Steppenwolf Theatre), sound design by Sartje Pickett (Love’s Labour’s Lost, American Players Theatre), wig design by David Zimmerman, choreography by Marc Wayne, with casting by Jonathan Hetler, Kansas City Casting by Andi Meyer and stage managed by Jordan-Canon Kruis.


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