SWEENEY TODD to Open Tennessee Rep's 30th Season, 10/2-25

SWEENEY TODD to Open Tennessee Rep's 30th Season, 10/2-25

Tennessee Repertory opens its 30th season of live, professional theatre with Stephen Sondheim's musical Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street. Sweeney Todd runs October 4 -October 25 at TPAC's Johnson Theater (with preview performances October 2 - 3). Tennessee Rep's 2008 production of this multiple Tony Award-winning musical had a completely sold out run, and was a smash hit with critics and theatre-goers alike.

The rare instance of a musical thriller, this chilling, suspenseful, heart-pounding masterpiece of murderous "barber-ism" and culinary crime tells the infamous tale of the unjustly exiled Benjamin Barker (aka Sweeney Todd). He returns to 19th century London seeking revenge against the lecherous judge who framed him and ravaged his young wife. The enterprising (and unforgettable) pie-maker Mrs. Lovett helps Sweeney Todd exact his revenge in the most "delicious" of ways. Sophisticated, macabre, visceral and uncompromising, Sweeney Todd mixes intense drama with howlingly funny moments of dark humor.

Matthew Carlton helms the role of the demon barber. Carlton says: "I came to Nashville after more than a decade in New York City, and, luckily, was brought into Tennessee Rep's family by Mac Pirkle in the company's 5th season. That first show was My Fair Lady, and about three dozen Tennessee Rep shows later, Sweeney Todd marks my 25th anniversary working with the company that has been my theatrical home-base, so the silver razors that Sweeney wields are the perfect gift.

"The part of Sweeney Todd is a gift to any actor but it is also a tremendously challenging role. The emotional range and the complexity of the music make it exciting to tackle while demanding a full commitment to the piece. Stephen Sondheim created a bold, brilliant, melodramatic musical that is, somehow, surprisingly funny and deeply touching as well. A great challenge for me is to find a way to bring out the humanity of Sweeney beneath all the theatrical murder and mayhem.

"I am looking forward to working with this incredibly talented cast. What a joy it will be to kill them!"

In addition to Carlton, Martha Wilkinson reprises her critically-lauded role as Mrs. Lovett. Wilkinson won "Best of Nashville" (Nashville Scene) and "Toast of Music City" (Tennessean) Best Actress Awards for her portrayal of Mrs. Lovett in Tennessee Rep's 2008 production of Sweeney Todd.

The production also features an all-star cast that celebrates Tennessee Rep's past, present, and future. Included among the cast are Galen Fott, Nathan Meyer, Whitney Meyer, Megan Murphy-Chambers, Patrick Waller, Jennifer Whitcomb-Oliva, Samuel Whited, and Bobby Wyckoff.

Tickets: Starting at $50 (starting at $12 for students with valid ID, some restrictions apply). Tickets for preview performances are $25. Cabaret table seating upgrade is available for an additional $10 per ticket. Tickets are on sale at the TPAC Box Office (at 505 Deaderick Street, Downtown Nashville). Tickets are available by phone or internet order at the following: (615) 782-4040 or www.tennesseerep.org

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