Meredith Willson's The Music Man

Sep 15 – Nov 11
Gilliam Stage at Barter Theatre

* A strobe light is used in this production. Please keep this in mind when purchasing tickets to the play.

“Bring the Entire Family”

Book, Music and Lyrics by
Story by

Never seen before on Barter Theatre’sGilliam Stage, there is truly nothing more American than Meredith Willson’s classic Broadway musical, “The Music Man.”

The fast-talking “Professor” Harold Hill convinces the parents of River City, Iowa, to buy band instruments and uniforms for their youngsters to save them from the corrupting influence of the local pool hall. In the process, he falls for the local librarian, Marian Paroo. Chaos ensues as Hill’s credentials are questioned, and the town is divided in their belief in this charismatic man. This story features some of musical theatre’s great characters including Mrs. Paroo, Winthrop, Hill’s sidekick Marcellus, Eulalie Mackecknie Shinn, and a host of others performed by Barter’s Resident Acting Company, who you know and love. Featuring songs from Willson’s timeless score including “Goodnight, My Someone,” “Seventy-Six Trombones,” “Shipoopi,” “(Ya Got) Trouble,” and “Till There Was You.”

Director's Notes


1912 in the United States: In January, New Mexico was admitted as the 46th State; in February, Arizona became the 48th State. It would be 1959 before Alaska and Hawaii became our 49th and 50th States. William Howard Taft was President. It was an election year; Woodrow Wilson would go on to be elected in November in a four-way presidential race against Taft, Teddy Roosevelt and Eugene Debs. In April, the Titanic sinks; Tiger Stadium opens in Detroit and Fenway Park opens in Boston. In May, the Suffragettes stage their first parade in New York City, marking the path forward for women to get the right to vote eight years later. Jackson Pollock, Studs Terkel, Perry Como, Woody Guthrie, Julia Child, Anne Brown (famous African American soprano), Gene Kelly, and Art Linkletter are born. For Iowa, it was a time of a booming new world filled with a diverse new population in search of the American Dream.

“The Music Man” celebrates all that is truly great about America’s small towns and small cities that make up the heartland of our country. This is a time where the diverse ethnic groups begin to come together for common economic good; where the rural, agricultural America begins to unite with the more urban, industrialized America; and where towns and cities expand across our nation. It is a time where strangers from around the world intersect with those who have lived in one place all of their lives. As exemplified by the school board, it is a time of tremendous political disagreement, where people can learn to come together to find common ground.

What is most important about “The Music Man,” for me, is this musical speaks about a time of hope and redemption, where a person and a community are able to seek and find a new life and a new path forward despite great adversity. A con-artist discovers his soulmate in a strong, independent woman, and that well-read, intelligent woman discovers the intelligent, worldly man of her dreams. They are in many ways the outcasts of the community, who, in the end, transform that community into something better, more united and with a positive vision for the future.

My hope is you will celebrate with us through “The Music Man” all that is great about America. Take home with you a real hope and joy about our country, and know we can find what is good in each other and create a positive vision as we move forward together.

Richard Rose

Director, The Music Man

Cast & Credits

Cast (In Order of Appearance):

Charlie Cowell: Barrett Guyton
Conductor: Shaan Sharma
Harold Hill: Nick Koesters
Mayor Shinn: Michael Poisson​
Jacey Squires: Zacchaeus Kimbrell
Ewart Dunlop: Sean Maximo Campos
Oliver Hix: David Alford
Olin Britt: Rick McVey
Marcellus Washburn: Andrew Livingston
Tommy Djilas: Joe Veale
Marian Paroo: Holly Anne Williams
Mrs. Paroo: Tricia Matthews​
Amaryllis: Lucy Piper*, Milly Rainero*, Carly Rutherford​*
Winthrop Paroo: Parker Collins*, Lucas Patterson​*
Eulalie Mackeckie Shinn: Mary Lucy Bivins
​​Zaneeta Shinn: Annie Simpson
Gracie Shinn: Tillie Jane Sells*, Olivia Stevens*
Alma Hix: Hannah Ingram​
Maud Dunlop: Zoë Velling​
Ethel Toffelmier: Paris Bradstreet
Mrs. Squires: Rusty Allen
Pick a little Ladies: Barrett Guyton, Garret T. Houston
Valentine: Sean Maximo Campos
Miss Andrew: Mary Lucy Bivins

Traveling Salesmen and Train Passengers: David Alford, Sean Maximo Campos, Zacchaeus Kimbrell, Andrew Hampton Livingston, Rick McVey, Rusty Allen, Ryan Featherstone, Garrett T. Houston, Taylor Marrs, Connor James Reilly
The People of River City, Iowa: Tricia Matthews, Rusty Allen, Ryan Featherstone, Barrett Guyton, Jenna Haimes, Garrett T. Houston, Taylor Marrs, Leah Nicoll, Shaan Sharma, Connor James Reilly
The Teen Dancers of River City: Sarah Laughland, Ryan Featherstone, Jenna Haimes, Taylor Marrs, Leah Nicoll, Connor James Reilly
The Youth of River City*: Emmitt George Breeding*. Delaney Bumgarner*, Parker Gray*, Owen Griffith*, Connor McCroskey*, Rachel Meade*, Abram Moore*, Gracie Pierce*, Tillie Jane Sells*, Olivia Stevens*

*These actors will perform in various rotations; please see the Actor Lobby Board for which actor is performing


Director: Richard Rose
Choreographer: Amanda Aldridge
Music Director: Lee Harris
Set Designer: Daniel Ettinger
Costume Designer: Amanda Aldridge
LIghting Designer: Andrew Morehouse
Sound Designer: Tony Angelini
Assistant to the Choreographer: Annie Simpson
Dance Captain: Hannah Ingram
Assistant Stage Manager: Victoria Sutton
Stage Manager: Cindi Raebel

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