RING OF FIRE opens in just a few days, and we're so excited for performances! We have an amazing cast and wanted you to be able to get to know them...

ben hope, ring of fire, virginia stage company, actor

BEN HOPE is very excited to bring the life and music of Johnny Cash to Virginia. Hope made his Broadway debut in 2012 in the Tony Award winning musical ONCE. He developed an early passion for good music and story telling through his upbringing in Birmingham, AL. This passion has taken him around the world playing such notable musical greats as Hank Williams, Elvis Presley, George Jones, Woody Guthrie, and Buddy Holly, among other more traditional musical theatre roles. Hope has a BFA in Musical Theatre from the University of Central Florida and lives in New York with his remarkable wife Katie Barton. Ben leads NYC-based Honky-Tonk band BEN HOPE & THE UPTOWN OUTFIT.  Learn more about Ben and the band on their Facebook page.  All of Ben’s music is available on iTunes and other digital music outlets.

katie barton, ring of fire, actress, virginia stage company

KATIE BARTON makes her Virginia Stage debut in Ring of Fire, reprising one of her favorite roles, June Carter Cash. Katie has toured the United States, Japan, and Canada with the Broadway National Tour of Million Dollar Quartet. She earned a degree in Musical Theatre at Birmingham-Southern College, and completed acting apprenticeships at Flat Rock Playhouse and Actors Theatre of Louisville. Katie is so grateful to have a career that allows her to travel the world, learning, growing and playing music along side her best friend and husband, Ben Hope. Favorite roles include: Dyanne - Million Dollar Quartet (National Tour, Las Vegas, Norwegian Getaway), Tammy Wynette – Stand By Your Man, Nora - Woody Sez, Lucy – Dracula (Actors Theatre of Louisville). 

Emily Mikesell

EMILY MIKESELLOff-Broadway: Woody Sez, Lone Star Love, Radio Gals, Cotton Patch Gospel, Swingtime Canteen. Regional: Goodspeed, Geva, Arkansas Rep, Pasadena Playhouse, Riverside Theatre, Florida Studio Theatre, Flat Rock Playhouse. Favorite roles include: Molly Ivors in James Joyce’s The Dead (Capital Rep), Rhetta Cupp in Pump Boys And Dinettes (Actors Theatre of Louisville), playingwith Robin and Linda Williams in Stonewall Country (Barter Theatre) and playing with The Red Clay Ramblers in Lone Star Love (Great Lakes Theater, John Houseman, 5th Avenue Theatre). She is thrilled to be making her Virginia Stage debut!

gill braswell actor ring of fire

GILL BRASWELL is a native of North Carolina. He is a graduate of Shenandoah Conservatory with a BFA in Musical Theatre and has been a professional actor and musician performing in regional theatres across the country for over 20 years. Top experiences include performing at the historic Ryman Auditorium and on the Grand Ole Opry. Gill was part of the original cast of Barter Theatre’s Keep on the Sunny Side: The Story of the Carter Family and originated the role of Dr. Ralph Stanley in Barter’s production of Man of Constant Sorrow: The Story of the Stanley Brothers and has served as an actor and pit musician with Barter for a dozen years. As an avid Cash fan, Gill is happy to be performing in Ring of Fire once again and being part of the cast here at Virginia Stage.  Gill is a proud member of Actors Equity. Thanks be to God for all these gifts.

sean powell actor

SEAN POWELL is excited to make his Virginia Stage debut.  Sean comes directly from Maples Repertory Theatre where he appeared in Million Dollar Quartet, Leading Ladies, and Anything Goes.  Favorite roles include: Ring of Fire (Johnny Cash), Legally Blonde (Emmett), Parade (Britt Craig), Spamalot (Not Dead Fred, Herbert, etc.), Three Musketeers (Rochefort), Fiddler on the Roof (Motel), Anything Goes (Billy), Smoke on the Mountain (Dennis), Little Women (Laurie), American Song (Woody Guthrie), Little Shop of Horrors (Seymour), Pride & Prejudice (Mr. Bingley), and Othello (Roderigo).  Sean holds a BFA in Musical Theatre, from Missouri State University. Thank you for supporting local theatre and keep coming back!  www.seanpowell.net


RING OF FIRE runs September 13 - October 1 at the historic Wells Theatre! Get your tickets today at vastage.org/ringoffire!