Hand To God
The plot revolves around Jason, a shy young boy who uses his hand puppet, Tyrone, to channel his teenager anger. It is a tragic yet funny storyline that makes this Robert Askins production a delightful play. This black comedy about a divided human soul is set mainly in the cheerily decorated basement of a suburban Texas Lutheran church.
The lead actor Steven Boyer, who plays the role of Jason/Tyrone, has managed to earn an OBIE Award for his outstanding performance in Hand to God at The Ensemble Studio Theatre. He has performed the central role twice for this production. Other programs he has been a part of include the likes of The Explorer’s Club and Modern Terrorism. The actor has worked with Leonardo DiCaprio in the Martin Scorsese film, The Wolf of Wall Street and is currently a part of the film, Listen Up Phillip. Steven has also made appearances in famous TV series such as Orange is the New Black, The Crazy Ones, Person of Interest and Law and Order among others.
The equally important role of Margery, a barely-keeping-it-together widowed mother of Jason, is played by the Tony-nominated Broadway star Geneva Carr. She has starred in Hand to God since the play’s first reading. Carr has also starred in the Off-Broadway Rose’s Dilemma and the Vagina Monolgues. On screen, she has appeared in Love and Other Drugs, It’s Complicated, Younger and The Leftovers.
Marc Kudisch, the actor who plays Pastor Greg is no less famous either. He has performed in The Pirates of Penzance at the NYC Opera, The Apple Tree, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, A Little Night Music, Roundabout Assassins, Bells Are Ringing, The Wild Party, The Holiday Guys in a Happy Merry Hanu-Mas and The Blue Flower, among other productions.
Michael Oberholtzer, who plays the bad boy Timmy, has previously been a part of Babylon Line, The Talls, Incident at Vichy, Raft of the Medusa, Delivery man, Dean, Hits and Take Back the Night, among other performances.
And the actress who plays the role of Jessica in the play, Sarah Stiles is a Tony Award nominee for “Best Featured Actress in a Play” in 2015. She has shown her talent in other productions as well, such as Steel Magnolias, Into The Woods, On A Clear Day You Can See Forever and The Road to Qatar, among other star performances.
Hand to God is a comedy that has struck the right chord with a lot of viewers and critics alike. It was first produced Off-Broadway in 2011, and debuted on the Great White Way with an award already under its belt: the Off-Broadway Alliance Award for Best New Play. Since its Broadway debut, this dark comedy has achieved tremendous success; managing to rack up a few more accolades – five Tony Award nominations along with loads of praise for everyone, including the playwright, Robert Askins and the foul-mouthed puppet star.
Various publications have given the show highly positive reviews. The Wall Street Journal believes regarding Hand to God, that ‘Nothing is more exciting than a new play that takes you by surprise’ while the New Yorker called it ‘Ribald and wickedly funny’ and a unique combination of Sesame Street and The Exorcist. The New York Times called it ‘Flat-out hilarious’ while the Huffington Post simply declared it the ‘Best play of the season’.
This is certainly not a play you want to miss this season. Lots of praise and many sold out shows later, Hand to God is still going strong as ever. Grab your Hand to God tickets now, and don’t let the chance to get the best seat for the outstanding play just pass you by!