Ensemble Theatre Presents RIPCORD

Start the new year with a showdown! Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati is pleased to present the regional premiere of Ripcord by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright David Lindsay-Abaire (Rabbit Hole, Shrek the Musical). This uproarious new comedy sets two spirited senior citizens against each other in a head-to-head battle of wits and wagers, leading to discoveries about friendship, forgiveness, and free falling. Playing January 19-February 16 and directed by D. Lynn Meyers. Production Sponsor is the Schueler Group.

A sunny room on an upper floor is prime real estate at Bristol Senior Living Facility. So, when cantankerous Abby is forced to share her quarters with happy-go-lucky Marilyn, she has no choice but to get rid of the infuriatingly chipper woman...by any means necessary. A seemingly harmless bet quickly escalates into a high-flying, dangerous game of one-upmanship in this deliciously inappropriate new comedy, perfect for warming up the winter.

"I love David Lindsay-Abaire's solid message in this play that life is never over," says Producing Artistic Director D. Lynn Meyers. "He shows us how to celebrate life and wraps it up in an incredibly funny-darkly funny-world where everybody can find their place. Ripcord is a parable about how we need to seize every day and live our lives to the fullest." She adds, "Often the world makes us shut down and pull back. This play says, 'Take a leap!'"

Dale Hodges (Abby Binder) has been a proud member of Actors' Equity since 1974. She returns to Ensemble Theatre, where she was last seen in The Humans as well as Outside Mullingar, Other Desert Cities, Grey Gardens, and Mrs. Mannerly. She performed last spring in Noises Off with the Cincinnati Shakespeare Company and has performed regularly in productions at Playhouse in the Park including The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Wit, King Lear, To Kill a Mockingbird, and 23 years of A Christmas Carol. Ms. Hodges has worked on Broadway in Equus and Benefactors, off-Broadway in Top Girls and A Woman in Mind, and in regional theatres around the country, including 15 summers with Peterborough Players in New Hampshire.

Pamela Myers (Marilyn Dunne) returns to Ensemble Theatre, where she was last seen in the 2005 and 2010 productions of Cinderella. As the first graduate from the Musical Theatre Program at University of Cincinnati's College-Conservatory of Music, she was cast in Company, for which she was nominated for a Tony Award. She performed in the 2002 Broadway revival of Into the Woods and starred in the regional premiere of Sondheim on Sondheim at Great Lakes Theatre Festival. Ms. Myers also helped create and performed in Sondheim Originals at the Eugene O'Neill Center. She starred in productions of Gypsy, Sweeney Todd, Sunday in the Park with George, I Do! I Do!, Annie Get Your Gun, and Steel Magnolias in regional theaters around the country. She appeared in In Performance at the White House: A Salute to Broadway, Showstoppers on PBS, and guest starred on TV in Happy Days, Alice, Major Dad, and Sha Na Na in the '70s and '80s.

Ryan Wesley Gilreath (Scotty) is a New York-based actor and recently played Deputy Sutherland in the film Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile, starring Zac Efron, and Forrest Mars in The Food that Built America for The History Channel. His other TV and film credits include TURN: Washington's Spies, AMC; American
Genius, National Geographic; Gold Fever, Discovery Channel; and the pilot Guilty (opposite Cuba Gooding, Jr.), Fox. His other theatre credits include Burning Desire (starring alongside Lou Diamond Phillips), Seven Angels Theatre; Mary's Wedding, Next Fall, Other Desert Cities, and Tribes, Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati; A Christmas Carol, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park; Ears on a Beatle, Human Race Theatre Company; and Deathtrap, Florida Repertory.

Lisa DeRoberts (Colleen/Woman in White) was last seen at Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati in Cinderella (2010) and Snow White. She was recently seen as Susan Swayne in Susan Swayne and the Bewildered Bride at Know Theatre of Cincinnati and Vibrata in Cincinnati Shakespeare Company's A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. She appears in the feature films The Old Man and the Gun and My Days of Mercy.

Justin McCombs (Benjamin/Lewis/Clown) has been an actor, teaching artist, and sometime stage manager in Cincinnati for twelve years. In addition to his Ensemble Theatre debut in last season's This Random World, his favorite productions include Henry V, Death of a Salesman, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, The Grapes of Wrath, The Great Gatsby, The 39 Steps, and One Man Two Guvnors with Cincinnati Shakespeare Company as well as Know Theatre of Cincinnati's Silent Sky and Pulp.

Carter Bratton (Derek/Zombie Butler/Masked Man) makes his Ensemble Theatre debut with this production. He is a founding member of Untethered Theater and The Clifton Players at The Clifton Performance Theatre, where he has appeared in and produced many productions. His favorite credits include Guest Artist, Small Engine Repair, The Realistic Joneses, August: Osage County, The Irish Curse, Red Light Winter, Superior Donuts, and Danny and the Deep Blue Sea. His film and TV credits include Mindhunter, The Old Man and the Gun, My Days of Mercy, and Chain of Command.

Production team includes D. Lynn Meyers (Producing Artistic Director), Brian c. Mehring (Set & Lighting Designer), Jack Murphy (Technical Director), Matthew Hollstegge (Production Manager), Shannon Rae Lutz (Properties Master & Design Assistant), Matt Callahan (Sound Designer), Reba Senske (Costume Designer), Kelly Yurko (Wig & Makeup Designer), and Drew Fracher (Safety Consultant). Production Stage Manager is Brandon T. Holmes.

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