from miscellaneous stage appearances
|july 11th, 2013:
The photos have been divided into
two sections. For the Theatre photos I have added
some theatrical appearances Matthew has done, and added
many more photos.
Based on Dolly Parton's
song and 1980 musical, Matthew plays lecherous and sexist
boss, Franklin Heart, Jr. The musical (as the movie)
deals with his three tormented secretaries exacting
their revenge upon the sleeze.
do! i do!
up with his talented and beautiful wife Christina for
this two person play, which revolves around forty years
in the marriage of an unnamed couple. The setting takes
place solely in their bedroom and the primary set is
their big four poster marriage bed. The first scene
takes place on their wedding night (1895), and ends
forty years later (1945) as they are forced to leave
their decades long home. In the mean time, there are
happy times, arguments, and heartbreaks. It is the story
of a marriage.
antony and cleopatra
appeared in the lead role of -- no, not cleo -- Mark
Antony in Southwest Theatre Company's (Mesa, Arizona)
production of Shakespeare's history; throughout
April of 2011. Mark Antony abandons duties as a loyal
Roman commander upon being beguiled by the Egpytian
Queen. The play revolves around their love and battles
against Octavian (later to become the first Emperor
Augustus) and the might of Rome. Kerry Lengel, The
Arizona Republic ("Ex-soap star Ashford in
'Antony and Cleopatra' at MAC The former 'Days of Our
Lives' actor bubbles over role") wrote:
marketing strategy for Antony and Cleopatra
looks like a case of "If you can't beat 'em,
join 'em." Instead of heralding the literary
merit of the play, they're calling it "Shakespeare's
greatest soap opera" to play up the pedigree
of star Matthew Ashford, former star of "Days
of Our Lives." And why not? Shakespeare was
a genius, sure, but his plots tend toward the
over-the-top. And aren't plays supposed to be
fun? "Coming back to Shakespeare, I find
that Antony and Cleopatra is one
of the most modern, sophisticated plays because
the characters are so human and flawed and sexual
and adult," Ashford says. "There's just
a heat and a passion that they carry that is all
too human."These are people of excess. Antony
and Cleopatra have no filter. They just let 'er
rip in front of people. And that's exciting because
so many characters I've played were really holding
back. These characters just let it fly. They give
way to full emotions. They say what they think,
they do what they want, in front of anybody."
Ashford, who starred as Jack Devereaux on
Days (1987-93 and 2001-06), studied classical
theater at the North Carolina School of the Arts
under Jared Sakren, now Southwest Shakespeare's
artistic director. His television credits include
General Hospital, One Life to
Live and the supernatural-themed Charmed.
With screen roles becoming sparser, Ashford has
returned more and more to the theater, including
a recent stint in the national tour of "Mamma
Mia!" "When I'm working on television,
you've got camera guys and lighting guys and grips
and the occasional director," he says. "You
perform for who you have, but it's the audience
that really feeds you. Being onstage, there's
an immediate connection. The performance is a
two-way street, the energy is going back and forth.
Mamma Mia! is very much like that,
the audience just grooved on it. And that was
just a big soap opera onstage." Guess you
can take the actor out of the soap, but you can't
take the soap out of the actor.
Throughout the spring
and summer of 2010, Matthew joined the North American
touring company in the role of Bill Austin. He gained
critical praise for his portrayl of Austin, Richard
Ouzounian (April 29, 2010) wrote in thestar.com (Toronto,
Canada), "...Matthew Ashford is propably the most
original and charming of all the Bill Austins I've encountered,
substituting sly style for boorish bravado."
in the romantic lead of Sky Masterson, in Sacramento
Music Circus' production; July 2009. The musical is
based on Damon Runyeon's characters. Nathan Detroit
and his gang attempt to set up an illegal Craps game.
High rolling gambler, Sky Masterson, who will bet on
anything, comes to town for the game. However, the game
is in jeopardy the police, and a local Christian mission
set out to save souls. Sky is bet that he can take the
virtuous Sarah Brown, daughter of the head of the mission,
to Cuba and to get her to partake in its nightlife.
In the end, Sarah wins Sky's heart, and he becomes part
of the mission; and all the other semi-mobsters and
gamblers are saved as well. Kathy Morrison of the
Sacramento Bee (July 23, 2009), wrote, Sky, "who
is often stiffy, here is given a wry likeability by
Matthew Ashford. The Havana bar scene and subsequent
`If I Were a Bell' number are hilariously staged. Watch
as Sky keeps trying to catch a very drunk Sarah before
she pitches over a cliff."
get your gun
appeared in the lead male role, Frank Butler, in the
Pittsburgh CLO production, Pittsburgh, PA; July 22nd
to August 3rd, 2008. In an intertnet review Ann Miner
had this to say about Matthew's performance, "I'm
not familiar with Ashford's television work, but he
shows he is a true and accomplished musical theatre
man and seems to really enjoy it...." The Irving
Berlin musical is a fictionalize account of Annie Oakley's
life and her time with Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show.
Frank Butler is the show's star, and he becomes both
rival and a romantic interest.
Ashford Homepage copyright 1996-2013, S. A. Wilson.
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The MAH was created July 21st, 1996