Stages Repertory Theatre Presents RING OF FIRE: THE MUSIC OF JOHNNY CASH

Stages Repertory Theatre Presents RING OF FIRE: THE MUSIC OF JOHNNY CASHThe iconic songbook of legendary American singer-songwriter and "Man in Black" Johnny Cash comes to life in the first production of Stages Repertory Theatre's 2018-2019 Season, Ring of Fire: The Music of Johnny Cash. Cash's tale of struggle and success, love and faith, rowdiness and redemption, and home and family are played out in this unique musical chronicling the life of one of the best-selling musicians of all time.

Originally developed for Broadway in 2006 by William Meade and Richard Maltby, Jr., this reconceived version by Maltby premiered in 2013 at Milwaukee Repertory and now makes its Houston premiere. The Denver Post called Ring of Fire "...crisp, juicy, a treat in the warm, fragrant dusk... a tight, celebratory tribute to one of the 20th century's most influential singer-songwriters."

Directed by and starring Ben Hope and Katie Barton, previously seen at Stages in Woody Sez: The Life and Music of Woody Guthrie and Hank Williams: Lost Highway, the musical features more than two dozen of Cash's classic hits including "I Walk The Line," "A Boy Named Sue," "Folsom Prison Blues," and "Ring of Fire," each sure to have audiences singing and clapping along. The production also stars Eric Anthony, Marcy McGuigan, and Morgan Morse. The five actor-musicians serve as the band, performing Cash's music live in addition to playing all the roles in the show.

Real-life husband and wife duo Hope and Barton, who will be playing Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash respectively, point out that "Johnny Cash was not only a gifted singer and songwriter, he was an intellectual, an avid reader, a brilliant storyteller, a philanthropist, an empath, and a man of deep faith and many demons. Ring of Fire allows the audience to see a glimpse of the charming spirit behind all those beloved songs, told in his own words as well as through his iconic music."

Stages Artistic Director Kenn McLaughlin agrees that Cash's music and story continue to resonate with audiences today. "Johnny Cash transcends so many labels and crosses so many boundaries that it's almost impossible to sum him up," McLaughlin said. "Great entertainer-yes; brilliant writer-yes; tortured artist-yes; American institution-yes. But beyond it all, he is a man who sang what was in his heart without reservation. His story is the perfect one to kick off our 41st Season at Stages-it is a true American love story filled with hope and humanity."

Stages' 2018-2019 Season is made possible in part by generous support from Lead Presenting Sponsor The Humphreys Foundation.

Performance times are Wednesdays & Thursdays at 7:30pm, Fridays at 8:00pm, Saturdays at 2:30pm and 8:00pm, and Sundays at 2:30pm.

Regular tickets start at $25 with savings Wednesday - Friday plus Saturday matinees for groups of 6 or more, or Saturday evenings and Sunday matinees for groups of 10 or more. To purchase, call the Stages Box Office at 713.527.0123 or reserve online at www.stagestheatre.com.

ABOUT STAGES REPERTORY THEATRE

Founded in 1978, Stages is a professional Equity theatre that produces new work, presents established work in new ways, nurtures and develops talent, and cultivates and strengthens relationships with Houston audiences. Characterized by courage, generosity, ingenuity and intimacy, Stages works to advance theatre and enliven community to make a more vibrant Houston.

Stages presents a broad scope of plays and musicals in an intimate setting, generating critical acclaim and creating powerful connections between plays and people. The third-largest theatre in Houston and the sixth-largest in Texas, Stages performs year-round, one of only a handful of Texas theatres that offers year-round employment for creative professionals. On average, Stages produces 12 productions per year totaling more than 375 performances and reaching 65,000+ patrons. Almost all of Stages' shows are rehearsed and constructed on-site in Houston, brought to life by an exceptional community of locally-based artists and craftspeople along with occasional guest directors, actors and designers from around the world.

For more than a decade Stages has made a strong investment in nurturing emerging artists and craftspeople who have now become field leaders and working professionals. Stages' learning opportunities include performance and production internship programs for college students and conservatory-style training for middle and high school students.

Through this robust scope of activities Stages encourages conversation about important ideas, provides insight into other cultures and viewpoints, and helps develop each new generation of artists, audiences and citizens. For more information visit www.stagestheatre.com.

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