MAMMA MIA!, July 20 - August 1
Over sixty million people from around the globe have fallen in love with Mamma Mia! The story-telling magic of ABBA’s timeless hit songs propels this funny, enchanting tale of love, laughter and friendship, creating the ultimate feel-good show! Rated PG-13
Music & lyrics by Benny Andersson, Bjorn Ulvaeus & Some songs by Stig Anderson
Book by Catherine Johnson
Originally conceived by Judy Craymer
Watch our behind-the-scenes & rehearsal video!
Meet Our 2021 Cast Members
Melissa is celebrating her ten-year Barniversary this year and thrilled to be spending it back on the Main Stage! Barn audiences will undoubtedly remember her recent roles as Shelby in STEEL MAGNOLIAS, SUSAN in BIG THE MUSICAL, and a two-time JANET in THE ROCKY HORROR SHOW (2012 and 2019). Melissa also took home a Wilde Award in 2019 for her appearance as the Beggar Woman in SWEENEY TODD. Past Barn favorites include Bonnie in BONNIE AND CLYDE, Olive Neal in BULLETS OVER BROADWAY, Elle Woods in LEGALLY BLONDE, Ariel in Disney’s THE LITTLE MERMAID, Lina Lamont in SINGING IN THE RAIN, and Kate Monster/Lucy the Slut in AVENUE Q. While living in New Orleans, Louisiana, Melissa was featured in many productions with the Jefferson Performing Arts Society. You can also find her in a number of upcoming feature films including Raunch and Roll-now streaming! Melissa holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from Kent State University. The Covid-19 pandemic brought Melissa a lot of opportunity for growth and she took full advantage by making a permanent move with her Barnie Family to Augusta, MI as well as obtaining her Michigan Real Estate License. When not acting or selling houses, Melissa can be found hanging with her children, Christopher and Cotton, and her Barnie hubby Patrick Hunter. As always, deepest thanks go to the Ragotzy Family for their support, love, and determination to keep the arts alive and thriving!
In her 35th season, Penelope has more than established herself as the Barn’s quintessential leading lady. Her resume here is highlighted by a series of compelling performances. Last season’s Mrs. Lovett in SWEENEY TODD and Donna in MAMMA MIA! are additions to her favorites along with Golde in FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, Aldonza in MAN OF LA MANCHA, Mona in THE BEST LITTLE WHOREHOUSE IN TEXAS, (all opposite Robert Newman), and opposite Tom Wopat as Annie in ANNIE GET YOUR GUN. Penelope has appeared in several feature films including RAUNCH AND ROLL, a vehicle written for her by husband Brendan Ragotzy, which recently had its national release June 1. She recently filmed her latest feature DORMANT EVIL which features many Barnies. You may have heard her on the radio as she has voiced over 125 jingles and commercials. She will once again, direct the annual Barn Christmas Cabaret. Her longest-running roles are her dearest- wife and mother to Brendan and their children Luke, Calli, Jacob and Melina. Along with her on stage work, Penelope serves the Barn as Publicist and coordinates the hiring and departmental placement of each season’s apprentice company. She’s a native of San Jose, CA, and is a proud alum of San Jose State University.
Robert has become a favorite guest star for the Barn the past decade. In the 2019 season, he was seen in the title role of SWEENEY TODD (opposite Penelope Alex) as well as MacMillian in BIG: THE MUSICAL. Other recent Barn shows include THE CIVIL WAR, NOISES OFF, Edna in HAIRSPRAY, THE LION IN WINTER (opposite Kim Zimmer), THE HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME, LOVE LETTERS, FIDDLER ON THE ROOF, and THE BEST LITTLE WHOREHOUSE IN TEXAS. Robert is perhaps best known for his 28-year run as Joshua Lewis on the longest-running program in broadcasting history, GUIDING LIGHT. The role garnered him 2 Daytime Emmy nominations for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series. He has recently guest-starred on HOUSE OF CARDS, HOMELAND, CHICAGO FIRE, CRIMINAL MINDS, NCIS, and LAW AND ORDER: SVU, as well as INVENTING ANNA, a new, soon-to-be-released Netflix series from creator Shonda Rhimes.
Film credits include AMAZING SPIDER-MAN 2, DRACANO, and the short film DEADLINE, for which he won the Best Actor award at the Los Angeles Independent Film Festival. Off-Broadway Credits include PERFECT CRIME, SHE’S OF A CERTAIN AGE, SESSIONS: THE MUSICAL, and QUIET ON THE SET. Regional credits include KISS ME KATE at Broadway Theatre of Pitman, ANNIE at Ogunquit Playhouse, Cape Fear Regional Theatre and North Carolina Theatre, WHO’S AFRAID OF VIRGINA WOOLF (also opposite Kim Zimmer) at Nantucket Theatre Workshop, the world premiere of NAKED INFLUENCE at Capitol Rep in Albany, Stephen Sondheim’s PUTTING IT TOGETHER at Delaware Theatre Company, OTHER DESERT CITIES at Cape May Stage; MAN OF LA MANCHA and GYPSY (with Tovah Feldshuh) at BRT; CURTAINS at Paper Mill Playhouse and TUTS; NINE at NSMT; GYPSY (with Kim Zimmer), A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC and THE FULL MONTY at PCLO. Other Barn credits include PICNIC, BAREFOOT IN THE PARK, ROMANTIC COMEDY, SYLVIA (which he also directed), MAN OF LA MANCHA, PETER PAN and DEATHTRAP.
He is thankful for his wife Britt, their now-grown children, Connor and Kendal, and the newest addition…Grandson Leo Robert Newman, born in October of 2020.
Brooke is thrilled, as always, to be returning to the Barn’s main stage for the second time as Tanya in MAMMA MIA! and this marks her 40th main stage production here. It’s been 21 years since her first year as a Barnie. Some of her favorite Barn roles include Betty “Blake” Rogers in THE WILL ROGERS FOLLIES (with Tom Wopat), Miss Adelaide in GUYS AND DOLLS for which she was nominated for a Michigan Wilde Award for best actress in a musical, Princess Amneris in Disney’s AIDA, Molly in GHOST, Fastrada in PIPPIN, Mrs. Banks in MARY POPPINS, and the role that started it all, the Matron in IT RUNS IN THE FAMILY. Before the world shut down, Brooke was in London and Stroud England workshopping a Shakespearean play, but now she is a full fledged resident of the great state of Michigan and has also established herself as a steadily working voiceover artist. Brooke would like to dedicate this performance to Padre Mac who will, no doubt, be singing along to every word, at the top of his lungs, from up above. Brooke is a proud member of Actors Equity Association. www.brookeevansvoice.com
Patrick returns this summer for his tenth season on the Barn stage. Favorite Barn roles include Beadle Bamford in SWEENEY TODD, Vice Principal Douglas Panch in SPELLING BEE, The Preacher in BONNIE AND CLYDE, Warner Purcell in BULLETS OVER BROADWAY, and Nicely Nicely Johnson in GUYS AND DOLLS, for which he won the Wilde Award for Supporting Actor in a Musical. Patrick's directing credits include two productions of DISASTER!, and 2019's BIG THE MUSICAL, for which he was recognized as outstanding director at the Wilde Awards. Patrick's original farce, IN HOT WATER, received a premiere filmed production on the Barn stage, available for purchase as a DVD. Regionally, Patrick is an award-winning actor in the New Orleans area. He holds an MFA in Theatre Performance from The University of New Orleans, and a BFA in Musical Theatre from Ithaca College. Patrick and his wife, Barn favorite Melissa Cotton Hunter, have recently become full-time Michiganders, along with their two children Christopher (6) and Cotton (4). In addition to his work onstage, Patrick holds the newly created position of Managing Director of The Barn Theatre School. Patrick would like to thank Brendan and Penelope for the opportunity to join them in continuing the magical tradition and the vital cultural institution that is the Barn Theatre.
Eric is elated to return to the Barn for their historic 75th season! Eric was an apprentice in 2007 and 2009, where Barn audiences saw him as the Lead Tenor in THE PRODUCERS, Tommy in THE WHO’S TOMMY, and Tom Sawyer in BIG RIVER. Eric is currently based out of the Twin Cities. Most recently, Eric performed in GUYS & DOLLS at the Guthrie Theater and THE BRIDGES OF MADISON COUNTY at Artistry Theater. Other Twin Cities collaborators: Theater Latte Da, History Theater, Mill City Summer Opera, Nautilus Music-Theater, Chanhassen Dinner Theatres, and Second Fiddle Productions. Regional collaborators: Dayton Opera, Beef & Boards, Gallery Players, and the Heritage Theatre Festival. Eric is the Director of Production at the Old Log Theatre where he directed the critically acclaimed production of A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE & MURDER. Other Old Log directing credits include GHOST: THE MUSICAL, LEND ME A TENOR, TENDERLY: THE ROSEMARY CLOONEY MUSICAL, THE DIXIE SWIM CLUB, HOW I BECAME A PIRATE, WINNIE-THE-POOH, and THE EMPEROR’S NEW CLOTHES. Eric holds a BFA in Musical Theater from Ithaca College.
Luke is so excited to be here with all of you this summer after a Covid-19 layover that felt like much longer than one Barn season. This summer, along with being a member of the Equity Company, Luke is the Bar Manager for the Rehearsal Shed and Miss Penelope’s Saloon which was a Covid renovation that he worked on alongside Steven Lee Burright, Troy Benton and Jerry McAllister. Luke has appeared on stage many times here at the Barn - most recently in our original films THE WHISTLE PIG’S REVENGE, and IN HOT WATER. Barn audiences will undoubtedly remember his portrayal of Pepper in 2019’s MAMMA MIA!, Jake in DISASTER! and the Maniacal Laughing Beaver in EVIL DEAD THE MUSICAL. Luke is a Graduate of Western Michigan University with a degree in Theatre Studies with an emphasis in Directing. He wishes to thank his amazing family and his loyal friends for all their love and support. Thank you all for coming this evening and we hope to see you throughout the summer!!!
Jack is overjoyed to be making his debut with The Barn this summer! Jack is going into his senior year at Oklahoma City University and plans to move to New York after he graduates. He is so excited for the summer and hopes to learn a lot and gain more experience. Jack would like to thank his parents, grandparents and voice teachers for supporting him along the way.
Aaron is delighted to be back at the Barn for his third summer! He was in the 2018 Christmas Cabaret, as well as performing in the Barn’s 2019 and 2020 seasons. Originally from Hastings, Michigan, Aaron has recently graduated from Western Michigan University with his BFA in Musical Theatre Performance. He was most recently seen in GUYS AND DOLLS and JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR at WMU. Aaron got his start in theatre in middle school under the direction of Laura Nikkel and is so thankful for all the opportunities theatre has given him! When he is not on stage, you can find Aaron playing basketball, exercising, or playing video games with some good friends. "All of my thanks go to my family, friends, and everyone who has helped me get to where I am today!"
Lexi is thrilled to be returning to the Barn Theatre for the 75th season! In addition to performing, she will be serving as the coordinator for the Backstage Xperience- an educational outreach program for students to gain an immersive experience in the world of professional theatre. She is from Long Island, NY and is a recent graduate of the Frost School of Music at the University of Miami. You may have seen her in Brendan Ragotzy’s original film WHISTLE PIG'S REVENGE as Daphne or on stage for the 2019 summer season in MAMMA MIA as Lisa, DISASTER!, BIG THE MUSICAL, and SWEENEY TODD. Some of her other favorite roles include Ariel in Disney’s THE LITTLE MERMAID, Kim MacAfee in BYE BYE BIRDIE, and Margot in LEGALLY BLONDE. She is the founder of the online learning community "The Smart Singer," where she teaches private voice lessons and shares advice on performing and vocal technique. She would like to thank her family, friends, and teachers for their continued support and, of course, the Ragotzy family for this incredible opportunity!
Cosette is so excited to be back at the Barn for another summer! Cosette graduated from Oklahoma City University with a bachelor’s degree in Music Theater. She is currently working towards her Master’s in Business Administration at Edgewood College in Madison, Wisconsin. Some of her favorite roles here at the Barn have been Johanna in SWEENEY TODD and Linda in EVIL DEAD. When not performing in shows, Cosette also competes within the Miss America Organization where she has won talent awards at Miss Oklahoma and will be competing for her home state title of Miss Wisconsin this June. She sends many thanks to the Ragotzy family for this incredible opportunity. I cannot wait to be back performing at my home away from home!
Ensemble – STEVEN LEE BURRIGHT*, JOHN JAY ESPINO*, CHARLIE KING*, SYDNEY WEISER, DANIELLE ULLMAN, KAT SCHERER, ZOE CONSTANTINIDES, CAROLINE VETTIE, JACK YEATER, NATHAN HOTY, CHRIS RUBINGH, JULIA ANNE COHEN, NICHOLAS BIDDLE, JASON KIMMEL, ELIZA KNODE, KAYLA GEROGOSIAN
*Denotes member of Actor’s Equity Association