Richard Maltby, Jr. to Direct Broadway-Bound Johnny Cash Musical

News   Richard Maltby, Jr. to Direct Broadway-Bound Johnny Cash Musical
Richard Maltby, Jr., who won a Best Director Tony Award for the hit revue Ain't Misbehavin', will direct a new musical based on the life of the late country singer Johnny Cash.
Richard Maltby, Jr.
Richard Maltby, Jr. Photo by Aubrey Reuben

Entitled Ring of Fire, the musical is set to embark on a national tour in fall 2005 followed by a 2006 opening on Broadway. Produced by Bill Meade and Phoenix Productions, Ring of Fire will feature more than 40 songs composed by Johnny and June Carter Cash, including such hits as "I've Been Everywhere," "Folsom Prison Blues," "A Boy Named Sue," "Hurt" and the title song. The musical, according to production notes, chronicles "the journey of the everyman, taking the audience through several different stages of life, love, loss and faith as experienced by 'The Man in Black.'" In a statement, producer Meade said, "More than three years ago, we planted the seed for a theatrical show based on the life of Johnny Cash. Since then, the concept has grown, evolved and developed into a musical celebration of the disparate stages of Mr. Cash's extraordinary life. There will be no Johnny Cash impersonator on stage, as the star of the show is the music. Through the music, loyal fans and mere observers will discover the soul of this man who touched so many."

The creative team for Ring of Fire will also include Richard Hoover (scenic design), David C. Woolard (costume design) and Ken Billington (lighting design).

Johnny Cash recorded more than 1,500 songs during his lifetime. He was the recipient of 11 Grammy Awards and also produced and acted in films. His autobiography is titled "Man in Black."

Richard Maltby, Jr. is a noted director and lyricist, who co-conceived and directed the Tony-winning revues Ain't Misbehavin' and Fosse. He wrote the lyrics for and also directed the musical Baby. Maltby also penned the lyrics for Broadway's Big, Nick & Nora and Miss Saigon and helped rewrite the lyrics for the American bow of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Song and Dance.

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