Peter Oyloe

Peter Plays Johnny Cash in National Tour of Million Dollar Quartet

Book by Colin Escott and Floyd Mutrux
Original Concept and Direction by Floyd Mutrux
Inspired by Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins

Peter Oyloe, Million Dollar Quartet, Johnny Cash

Peter Oyloe as Johnny Cash in Million Dollar Quartet

“Million Dollar Quartet” is inspired by the famed recording session that brought together rock ‘n’ roll icons Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis and Carl Perkins for the first and only time. On December 4, 1956, four young musicians gathered at Sun Records in Memphis for what would be one of the greatest jam sessions ever. “Million Dollar Quartet” brings that legendary night to life, featuring a score of rock hits including “Blue Suede Shoes,” “Fever,” “That’s All Right,” “Sixteen Tons,” “Great Balls of Fire,” “Walk the Line,” “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On,” “Who Do You Love?,” “Matchbox,” “Folsom Prison Blues,” “Hound Dog” and more.
*Note; All cigarettes used in the show are non-tobacco herbal cigarettes and are just used for effect.
Director’s Notes
Music is defined as: the art of sound in time that expresses ideas and emotions through the elements of rhythm, melody, harmony, and color.
Simply put: music is the sound of our very soul. I believe it follows that Rock ‘n Roll is the soul’s most primal expression. It burst from the seams of the late 1940’s and would, by the mid-50’s, cause a revolution of hip swiveling teens to scare the daylights out of their parents.
At the time our play takes place, this Sound Revolution was just beginning. And Sam Phillips was its greatest architect. Sam knew the awesome power of music from the time he was in grade school. The favorite nephew of his mute Aunt Emma, he learned that rhythmic gestures could make a wordless language. He soon understood that the language of music could transcend the borders of the physical; and of social status, color, age, and even time. Sam’s Uncle Silas (not his uncle at all, but a black man who’d fallen on hard times) moved into the Phillips’ house when Sam was just a boy. Sam’s father welcomed Silas, it was the Christian thing to do. Silas would have a huge impact on Sam’s sense of self- and his ability to observe, empathize, and make joy. Sam thought: what if I had been born black?He saw that physical traits did not define a person and discovered that music was color blind. From back room juke joints to gospel churches, everyone could understand the beat. By his early 20s, Sam was in Memphis, devoted to the search for young musicians, looking always “to bring out of a person what was in him… to help him express what he believed his message to be”.*
In recent years, science has proven what our ancestors (and Sam) already knew: rhythm, singing, stomping, hollerin’ to the beat- are honest expressions of our very core. Rock ‘n roll is the musical dialect that erupted like a volcano on December 4th, 1956. In the hands of these hungry, mostly unknown, young men: Johnny, Carl, Elvis, and Jerry Lee- and their fearless crusader, Sam Phillips, the soundtrack of our lives was forever changed.
Today’s music is a direct descendant of the Rock ‘n Roll that percolated at Sun Records on that fateful day. We have seen it shine as a beacon of truth, bridging the chasms of social order, religion, and segregation; each of us connected by its power. We take our place in this theatre, as the grandchildren and great grandchildren of melody and rhythm and of course, all that hip swiveling.
Rock ‘n Roll was nothing less than a sound revolution. This is the story of how it all went down.
*from ‘Sam Phillips, The Man Who Invented Rock and Roll’, by Peter Guralnick
~ Susanne Boulle
Director, Million Dollar Quartet.

(In Order of Appearance)
Brother Jay: Bill Morey
Fluke: Jon Rossi
Jerry Lee Lewis: Taylor Gray
Sam Philips: Luke Darnell
Carl Perkins: Austin Hohnke
Johnny Cash: Peter Oyloe
Dyanne: Tiffan Borelli
Elvis Presley: Daniel Durston

When the Wide World Roars Released


CHICAGO – Acclaimed Chicago actor, singer, and songwriter Peter Oyloe is thrilled to announce the release of his new EP of original material, When The Wide World Roars. The five songs on the EP represent a sampling of an extensive catalog of new compositions that Oyloe has accumulated since his previous releases. Described as a “future folk legend” by, Oyloe is “soulful and singular,” says Tina Salamone, BCPA Performing Arts Director in Bloomington, IL. “If Johnny Depp and Cat Stevens had a son, and James Taylor was his babysitter, THAT would be Peter Oyloe.

When The Wide World Roars was produced by multiple Grammy Award-nominated producer Fred Mollin. Peter has “the best of a singer-songwriter’s gift,” says Mollin, “married to a theatrical feel that gives his songs and vocals an extra dimension of feeling.” It was recorded at the legendary Sound Emporium Studios in Nashville, TN, with some of the most in-demand Nashville studio musicians, including John Hobbs on keyboards, John Willis on guitars, Larry Paxton on bass, and Shannon Forrest on drums.

Oyloe first met Mollin while playing the title role in a new musical workshop on Martha’s Vineyard in the summer of 2014 called SEARCH: Paul Clayton, about the legendary 1960s Greenwich Village folk scene and the artists, including Clayton, Bob Dylan, Dave Van Ronk, et al., who made it what it was. SEARCH was produced Off-Broadway the following spring.  “…Peter Oyloe’s soulful singing and poignant performance capture our hearts.” “Oyloe’s Clayton is a still, thoughtful, creative man; a man who felt misunderstood and spun out of control. Slowly, Oyloe turns the once motivated artist to a man with deep resentment, shame, and fear.” and “Oyloe has a potent expressive voice and is impressive in a touching performance.” SEARCH: Paul Clayton is currently being shopped around the U.S. for future productions.

On When The Wide World Roars, Oyloe and Mollin forge a new, full-throated sound that perfectly complements Oyloe’s continued maturation as a songwriter. Traveling, learning, working, finding and losing love…all of this life lived in the intervening years has been funneled into the creation of these tracks. Each cut is radio-ready yet maintains the distinctive acoustic guitar work, lyrical vulnerability, and wistfully hopeful tone that make the music recognizably Peter’s. The album starts off gently with “Not Right Now,” a bittersweet lament for a lost friend and lover, exemplified by a gorgeous Hammond organ solo. The band really rocks into high gear with “June Gloom,” a deceptively jaunty, honky-tonkish cut that takes its name from a Southern California weather phenomenon. On “The Touchstone,” driving guitars and tribal drums wrap around evocative lyrics about reaching out for love. “Night Light” finds Peter and the band at their most Nashville and would fit right in covered by one of the characters on the current TV show of the same name. The final cut, “Fire,” is the emotional climax of the album; the soaring melody and aching vulnerability of the lyrics find their perfect catharsis in Mollin’s stirring full-band arrangement. “Peter is simply soulful,” says Mollin, “and the EP is compelling in a way that is so heartfelt and deeply emotional. He has a vocal and musical vision that is truly miraculous.”

In addition to writing and playing music, Peter Oyloe is a five-time Best Actor award winner (3 Chicago Jeff Awards, 1 Cincinnati LCT Award, 1 Boston W.I.S.E Award) and has been honored with nominations three more times. His most prominent role has been country music legend Hank Williams, Sr in Hank Williams: Lost Highway, which he has played everywhere from Chicago to Cincinnati to upstate New York to Knoxville. His work as Hank Williams has been described as, “a knockout interpretation…as good as it gets.” by the Syracuse Times and “He is so comfortable inside Williams’ cowboy boots that his performance with undoubtedly become the way many imagine the late singer…” by The Citizen.

Oyloe was nominated for a Jeff Award for Best Score for Equus in which he played Alan Strang (Best Actor Award), and the short film In Love With A Nun, for which Peter wrote much of the music as well as played the lead role, was showcased at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. He is currently working on a Hank Williams touring band that he plans to have ready for booking by early 2016.

Legendary producer, composer, and record executive Fred Mollin first came to prominence in the late ’70s as the producer of the Grammy-nominated hit “Sometimes When We Touch” by Dan Hill. He has worked with Jimmy Webb, Johnny Mathis, Billy Joel, Kris Kristofferson, and Vince Gill, among many others, and as Vice President of A&R for Walt Disney Records was Executive Producer of High School Musical – The Concert and produced Billy Ray Cyrus’ hit album Home At Last. His numerous awards include three Junos, a Gemini, and five SOCAN awards for film and television music.

When The Wide World Roars is available for purchase nationwide on iTunes, Spotify, CD Baby, Groove Music and on For concert and booking inquiries, please contact Peter at    peter[at]

Search: Paul Clayton Off-Broadway in NYC

Peter starred in SEARCH:PAUL CLAYTON which recently played to New York audiences for an Off-Broadway run at the Triad Theatre, 158 W. 72nd St for 13 performances in May, 2015.


May 6 –   7PM PREVIEW
May 7 –   7PM
May 8 –   9PM
May 11 – 9PM
May 12 – 9PM
May 14 – 9PM
May 15 – 9PM
May 16 – 9PM
May 17 – 7PM
May 19 – 7PM
May 20 – 2PM and 7PM
May 21 – 7PM

Peter Oyloe and Danni Smith Lead Cast of Passion

Passion, Theo Ubique, Theatre, Theater, Chicago, Danni Smith, Peter OyloeUPDATE: Passion wins the Jeff Award for BEST MUSICAL

Theo Ubique Cabaret Theatre’s production of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine‘s Passion will feature three Jeff-Award lauded performers in its lead roles, Artistic Director Fred Anzevino has announced. The role of Fosca, the sickly woman obsessed with a handsome young soldier in 19th Century Italy, will be played by Danni Smith, who just last year was honored with the Jeff Award for Actress in a Supporting Role for her work in Bailiwick Chicago’s production of the musical See What I Wanna See. Smith’s win came after two previous nominations in the same category, for Theo Ubique’s Pump Boys and Dinettes and Bohemian Theatre Ensemble’s The Glorious Ones. Playing Giorgio, the military officer who is the object of Fosca’s affections, will be Peter Oyloe, a three-time Jeff Award winner. Oyloe’s recent win as best leading actor in a musical for 2013’s Hank Williams: Lost Highway was preceded by wins for his leading role in Equus and supporting role in The Pillowman, both at Redtwist Theatre. Collette Todd, Jeff-nominated for her role as Giulietta in Theo Ubique’s Aspects of Love and recipient of critical and audience raves for her leading roles in Light Opera Works‘ productions of Man of La Mancha, Oliver! and Annie Get Your Gun, will play Clara – the third member of Passion’s love triangle. Ms. Todd will also understudy the role of Fosca.

The cast will also include John Leen (Colonel Ricci), Peter Vanvakas (Dr, Tambourri), Sean Knight (Lt. Barri, Ludovic), Anthony Apodaca (Torasso, Fosca’s Father), Christopher Logan (Major Rizzoli, understudy Giorgio), Ryan Armstrong (Lombardi, understudy soldiers), Sarah Larson (Mistress, Ensemble, understudy Clara), Sarah Simmons (Fosca’s mother, ensemble), and Thom Britton (understudy Dr. Tambourri).

The production will be directed by Theo Ubique Artistic Director Fred Anzevino, a four-time Jeff Award winner for his direction of musicals at Theo Ubique. Kory Danielson will be music director. Adam Veness, Brian Hoehne and Bill Morey are designing sets, lighting and costumes respectively. Paige Keedy is designing props and will also serve as stage manager. Violence designers are R & D Choreography and Courtney Crouse will be assistant director.

Passion will preview at the No Exit Cafe, 6970 N. Glenwood Ave. Chicago, from March 7th through 9th, with performances at 8:00 pm Friday and Saturday and 7:00 Sunday. Press opening will be Monday, March 10 at 7:30 pm. The regular run will be Thursdays at 7:30 pm, Fridays and Saturdays at 8 pm and Sundays at 7 pm through April 27th.

The musical by Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine opened at Broadway’s Plymouth Theatre on May 9, 1994 and ran for 280 performances, winning the Tony Award for Best Musical, Best Score, Best Book and Best Actress in a Leading Role (Donna Murphy). The musical is based upon the film Passione d’Amore (1981) directed by Ettore Scola, and on the novel Fosca by I. U. Tarchetti. A filmed version of the Broadway production starring Murphy aired on PBS on September 8, 1996. The Ravinia Festival in Highland Park, Illinois presented a staged concert production of the musical, starring Patti LuPoneMichael Cerveris and Audra McDonald and directed by Lonny Price, in August 2003. Price again directed LuPone, Cerveris and McDonald in Passion in performances at New York’s Lincoln Center from March 30 – April 1, 2005 of which the March 31st performance was broadcast live by PBS.

Ticket information is available online at or by phone at 800-595-4849