Paul Russell

authordirectorcasting director

A Free Man of Color | Oliver | The Scarlet Pimpernel | Mamma Mia! | Bat Boy | Rocky Horror | Footloose - Barter | Footloose | Guys and Dolls | About



MAMMA MIA! - U.S. Regional Premiere, Barter Theatre: Paul Russell, director

U.S. Regional Premiere


"If you’ve never seen a show at Barter Theatre or if you’ve seen a hundred, you are going to be absolutely amazed and enthralled by MAMMA MIA!, which is, without a doubt one of the best — if not THE best — musical ever to literally rock the historic old venue."


I Have A Dream - U.S. Regional Premire MAMMA MIA!

 (Above: Hope Quinn & Justin Tyler Lewis - "I Have a Dream" )

"Beats New York, London, and Washington!

"MAMMA MIA! just opened at the Barter Theatre... What a performance!
Absolutely not to be missed!"

Trip Advisor

Mamma Mia! U.S. Regional Premiere, Barter Theatre

(Above L. to R.: Hannah Ingram, Tricia Matthews & Paris Bradstreet - "Dancing Queen Bows")

“If you see the wonder

of a fairy tale…”

"I Have a Dream" (Mamma Mia!)

Director's notes...



Honey, Honey - Mamma Mia! U.S. Regional Premire, Barter Theatre

(Above: Hope Quinn - "I Have a Dream" )

Young Sophie in MAMMA MIA! sings of a hope. A dream. A fantasy “to help her through reality” of not knowing her father. In my own family I too have missing elements.

Sophie isn’t much different from my mother who was adopted. My mother, near daily, wonders aloud of who are the two missing pieces to her family. Yes, her husband, two sons, friends, numerous packs of dogs, and environment are and remain as her family. But she still wonders. Who?

I’ve never known of maternal grandparents or potential uncles, and aunts. My reality of a family is larger than the mystery of “who?” MAMMA MIA! embraces this discovery that ‘family’ reaches far deeper than blood. A journey both Sophie, her mother Donna, and I live.

Much of my adolescence was lived in the Delaware Valley (the Philadelphia area). Obviously, I have an affinity for cheesesteaks, the Phillies, Philly soft pretzels, and I am devoted to a wondrous convenience store chain called Wawa. More importantly I have a love for the people—both friends and passersby—of the Delaware Valley. The sense of community within the Philadelphia metropolitan area is fervent. It’s familiar. Odd as it may read to you, all that is within the Delaware Valley—cheesesteaks, friends, and Wawa—is my family, along with my blood relations.

For Sophie (as with my mother, myself, my brother and his daughter) until the hope of knowing her full family—that happy ending of Sophie’s fairy tale—is fulfilled, Sophie’s environment, her mother, Tonya, Rosie, her fiancé, and friends within MAMMA MIA! is ‘family.’ Possibly, that missing branch—the identity of Sophie’s father—is also family. Emptiness encourages hope. Hope and wonderment are kind siblings to call family. As for Sophie? Her fairytale delivers her a family three-fold.

Mamma Mia Barter Theatre

(Above: Tricia Matthews & Cast - "Mamma Mia")

Lay All Your Love On Me, MAMMA MIA!, U.S. Regional Premire, Barter Theatre

(Above: Cast in "Lay All Your Love on Me")

Dancing Queen, MAMMA MIA!, U.S. Regional Premiere, Barter Theatre

(Above, L. to R.: Hannah Ingram, Tricia Matthews, & Paris Bradstreet - "Dancing Queen")

"Mamma Mia" - MAMMA MIA! U.S. Regional Premiere, Barter Theatre

(Above L. to R.: Rick McVey, Nick Koesters, and Nick Piper)

Voulez Vous - MAMMA MIA! U.S. Regional Premiere, Barter Theatre

(Above: Cast in "Voulez Vous")

Slipping Through My Fingers - MAMMA MIA!, Regional Premiere, Barter Theatre

(Above L. to R.: Tricia Matthews & Hope Quinn - "Slipping Through My FIngers":)

Does Your MOther Know - MAMMA MIA! U.S. Regional Premiere, Barter Theatre

(Above: Hannah Ingram & Sean Maximo Campos in "Does Your Mother Know?")

(Above: MAMMA MIA! company pose for wedding photo in "I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do")


MAMMA MIA! 'Behind-the-Scenes' Special on NBC''s Daytime Blue Ridge:

MAMMA MIA! U.S. Regional Premiere Trailer - Barter Theatre:



Barter Theatre - 1st perfomance May 27, 2016:


Sound Design: Tony Angelini; Lighting Design: Andy Morehouse; Costumes: Howard Tsvi Kaplan, Set Design: Richard Finklstein; Technical Director: Caspar Eichin; Props: Helen Stratakes; Stage Manager: Cindi Raebel; Assistant Choreographer: Sarah Laughland; Choreographer: Amanda Aldrige; Music Director: Lee Harris; Director: Paul Russell; Producing Artistic Director: Richard Rose


Sophie Sheridan; Hope Quinn; Ali: Annie Simpson; Lisa: Sarah Laughland; Tanya: Hanna Ingram; Rosie: Paris Bradstreet; Donna Sheridan: Tricia Matthews; Sky: Justin Tyler Lewis; Pepper: Sean Campos; Eddie: Andrew Livingston; Harry Bright: Nick Piper; Bill Austin: Rick McVey; Sam Carmicheal: NIck Koesters; Minister: Zacchaeus Kimbrell;

Ensemble: Angie Fisher, Jenna Haimes, James Hendley, Josh Levinson, Carrie Smith Lewis, Jeff Sundheim, Joe Veale,and Sarah Vishnev



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