From The Heart

4.46 (57)

From The Heart

15 performances between Feb. 22, 2016 and May 7, 2016
(Comedy/Drama) Dramedy and live music
Directed by Richard Wright-Firth • Adapted for stage by Candice van Litsenborgh from the book by June Carter Cash • Performed by Shannyn Fourie and Andy Lund • Presented by Shannyn Fourie and Canned Rice Productions
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From the Heart offers a glimpse behind the glamour, at the courage needed to be the supporting player to a superstar. Adapted from the book by June Carter Cash, From the Heart is a collection of defining moments in the life of a girl who was born into country music royalty. From little Junie, who talked too much and swung on the stage curtains, to the woman who finally got country music’s ultimate bad boy, Johnny Cash, to walk the line.

 Shannyn Fourie (producer and “June Carter Cash”) was most recently seen on Cape Town stages in The Fugard Theatre’s production of Cabaret in which she played the titillating roles of Fraulein Kost and Kit Kat Club girl, Fritzie. In 2014 she appeared on stages in England, Wales and Ireland in Janice Honeyman’s production of Showboat. Other musical theatre performances include the 2010 Ovation Award winning production of I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change (Woman #2), Amanda in Edges and Sandy in Grease. Shannyn played Amy in the psychological drama, Tape and has also co-written and produced Salute the Troops – a wartime musical revue show. She is an accomplished make-up artist and sought-after corporate entertainer.  

Andy Lund (musical supervisor and “Johnny Cash”) has released four full length albums and four Eps over his various projects (Andy Lund & The Mission Men, Oh Mercy – his country duo with Emma Du Preez and Roswell Kings) His albums have all been critically acclaimed, with his last solo album being voted one of the top albums of 2013 by Rolling Stone SA Magazine. Lund wrote, directed and hosted a show dedicated to the life of Bob Dylan at the BMW Pavilion Theatre. From The Heart marks Lund’s professional theatre debut after producing some questionable backyard plays over the last 15 years.  

Richard Wright-Firth (director and co-producer) is a British actor, director, teacher and voice-over artist. He graduated from the prestigious Italia Conti Academy of Theatre Arts. He is a former member of the BBC Radio Drama Company. Richard also returned to Italia Conti as the Radio and Recorded Voice lecturer and director of the final year radio productions. He is an accomplished theatre performer having performed in well over twenty productions across the UK (Julius Caesar, They Shoot Horses Don’t They) Since moving to South Africa he has appeared in a number of films, commercials and tv series, he has narrated several film documentaries and has been the voice for many national and international campaigns as well as working as a dialect coach both privately and for the BBC. He has directed several musical comedy cabarets on Cape Town stages, including Understudy Blues for Canned Rice Productions. Richard is most well known as the foul-mouthed pirate, Muldoon, in the Starz series – Black Sails.

 Candice van Litsenborgh (script adaptation, photography and co-producer) is a regular on South African stages. Last year she appeared as loveable blonde ditz, Audrey, in Little Shop of Horrors for which she has recently won the Broadway World South Africa Award for Best Actress in a Musical. Musicals: Sunset Boulevard; Evita; Chess; Jesus Christ Superstar; I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change. Children’s Theatre: Hansel and Gretel, Alice in Wonderland, The Little Mermaid. Theatre: Much Ado About Nothing, Hamlet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Huis Clos. She wrote the musical comedy cabaret Understudy Blues for Canned Rice Productions and has also worked as a co-writer and director on several revues and comedy cabarets. She is currently performing in the Pieter Toerien/KickstArt production of Sweeney Todd.

Media & Reviews

Review of From the Heart by David Fick

Audience Responses

Liked the idea of the non-linear structure, and snapshots of a life. But felt that for non-Cash n Carter fans more context needed. Some neat direction but some scenes (e.g. learning guitar, Northern expedition) too long and laboured. Was most effective when simple and direct (Cash's Birthday dedication, particularly) and closing number fabulous. Could develop into a great show.

Nigel • Attended Feb. 22, 2016, 7 p.m.

Poignant, pithy, peerless!

Kevin • Attended May 2, 2016, 7 p.m.

Great acting, singing, playing, accents - felt like being back in Nashville Tennessee!

Anthony • Attended Feb. 22, 2016, 7 p.m.

Absolutely loved it!

DEREK • Attended May 7, 2016, 7 p.m.

Both actors were very good. Production was great. Perhaps the structure of the piece itself was a little awkward? But overall another entertaining night at the Alex.

Deborah • Attended March 1, 2016, 7 p.m.

Was a wonderful evening with awesome artists! Congratulations to all involved - it was brilliant! Love the Alexander Bar and will definitely be back for more shenanigans......

Deb • Attended Feb. 24, 2016, 7 p.m.

Poignant and entertaining. Fabulous performances: nail the complexities of June and J Cash TheCapeRobyn

Robyn • Attended Feb. 24, 2016, 7 p.m.

The best show I've watched at Alex Bar thus far. Shannyn is a goddess! Exceptional. Rising star!!

Keegan • Attended May 7, 2016, 7 p.m.

I thought Shannyn Fourie's performance was outstanding. However, I am not sure that the extracts provided a cohesive whole - particularly, if one didn't know the story of June Cash.

Arddy • Attended May 2, 2016, 7 p.m.

Very enjoyable show! Convincing performances by Shannyn Fourie and Andy Lund of a thought-provoking, well-written script by Candice van Litsenborgh. Creative directing by Richard Wright-Firth helped bring this show alive. A simple hand-out prior to the show explaining the background and the style of June Carter-Cash's book would be helpful in understanding that the various scenes are all vignettes from the book and performed in the same meandering order they were originally written.

Caroline • Attended March 2, 2016, 7 p.m.

A really good show! Great performances from both actors. Super luttle venue!

Grant • Attended March 4, 2016, 9 p.m.

Excellent Show and not what I was expecting. The quality of acting was first class and attention to detail brilliant. I would recommend it to anyone who loved Johnny & June and wanted an insight into their lives from another angle.

Kevin • Attended May 3, 2016, 7 p.m.

A different, thought provoking perspective on the Johnny & John story. A fantastic delivery from both Shannyn and Andy filled with raw emotion that nearly bough us to tears! Well done and congratulations to all involved!

Mandy • Attended March 4, 2016, 9 p.m.

loved the music

Charmaine • Attended March 4, 2016, 9 p.m.

Amazingly emotive and gripping - an unexpected, fresh and well-constructed take on the life of two legends, portrayed in a beautiful and engaging way - humor, devastation, love and superb acting and musical talent. The cast could not have been more perfect. Beautiful and intimate. My eyes did not leave the stage for a second. Pure, unadulterated magic. Bravo!!

Lindsay • Attended March 5, 2016, 9 p.m.

We thought the female actress was very good but we're disappointed in the male performance.

Hélène • Attended March 3, 2016, 9 p.m.


Samantha • Attended March 1, 2016, 7 p.m.

Compacted into 1 hr - you did a really good job. Will come again if I have the chance!

Mike • Attended May 2, 2016, 7 p.m.


Benedicte • Attended Feb. 22, 2016, 7 p.m.

Fabulous show.

Laura • Attended March 4, 2016, 9 p.m.


Benedicte • Attended Feb. 22, 2016, 7 p.m.

I really loved this show. It worked perfectly in the venue and the performances were great. I left there thinking that we're privileged to see such world-class shows in Cape Town. It's one of the reasons I'll always return to the Alexander.

PWR • Attended March 3, 2016, 9 p.m.


Graeme • Attended May 7, 2016, 7 p.m.

Riveting and heartfelt and the music was mesmerising. Left me wanting more.

Arafah • Attended Feb. 22, 2016, 7 p.m.

It was brilliant, and a lovely venue. All in all such a nice evening out. Thank you!

Michelle • Attended May 6, 2016, 7 p.m.

Wish it was longer and peppered with more of the stage highlights like It Ain't Me Babe. It would show more of the contrast to on stage and what as happening behind the scenes. Ultimately making the lows seem lower and the highs higher

Johanna • Attended May 7, 2016, 7 p.m.

Wow, it was unbelievable - My party of 10 thoroughly enjoyed the show. We were mesmerized. Shannyn is truly gifted and we look forward to the next show.

CHARMAINE • Attended Feb. 24, 2016, 7 p.m.

From the Heart was a phenomenal performance by two really talented artists. I was really moved and enjoyed it thoroughly. Johnny and June were both super stars!

Margaux • Attended Feb. 24, 2016, 7 p.m.

Christine • Attended March 3, 2016, 9 p.m.


Daneel • Attended Feb. 22, 2016, 7 p.m.

A really intimate play which draws you in to some of the key moments in the lives of June and Johnny Cash! Go see it if you get the chance.

Bradley • Attended March 2, 2016, 7 p.m.

Incredible. If you didn't know anything about Johnny Cash I guess it would have been quite obscure. I loved the perspective it brought to what I thought i knew about him.

Kirsten • Attended May 5, 2016, 7 p.m.

A little gem of a show. Really zoomed into the intense and complicated dynamic between Johnny and June.

Erns • Attended March 3, 2016, 9 p.m.

Beautiful performances, and well staged, even though I struggled to understand the piece. The more I think about it though, it is the perfect show for The Alexander Bar; a space to experiment with form, meaning and stagecraft. It is a risky piece, but seriously well executed.