Handle With Care
By Jason Odell Williams
Hayley Finn, Director
Individual Tickets on Sale March 13, 2013
"a perfect date [for] friends and lovers… a charming new play!” — Ithaca Times
This sweet and touching comedy is the story of a young Israeli woman, Ayelet, who is a reluctant traveling companion to her grandmother, Edna, on a trip to America. A strange itinerary through small Virginia towns, a botched DHL delivery, a surprise blizzard, and a poor translator slowly bring to focus their fate. Handle with Care is a tender tale of loss and love that gently explores faith, friendship, family, intergenerational relationships, and the eternal question of destiny.
An Area Premiere Production
*audio described performance
Call 651-647-4315 to inquire about ASL performance
Meet the Artists
Dustin Bronson (Terrence), originally from Sacramento, CA, fell in love with Minneapolis while he was attending the University of Minnesota/Guthrie Theater BFA Actor Training Program. Dustin has had the opportunity to perform around the country. Twin Cities theater credits include the role of James Watson in Photograph 51 with MJTC, as well as Pillsbury House Theatre, The Playwrights’ Center, Workhouse Theatre Company, The Public Theater of MN, Park Square Theatre, and Illusion Theater. Dustin's next project takes him out to Colorado where he will be performing with Creede Repertory Theatre.
Linda Kelsey (Edna) is probably best known for the role of Billie Newman in Lou Grant. Other TV roles include: ER, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, M*A*S*H, The Twilight Zone, Streets of San Francisco, and Eleanor and Franklin. Local theater credits include Park Square Theatre (Mary Queen of Scotts, Eleemosynary, Biography, Dancing at Lughnasa, The Belle of Amherst, Doubt), Guthrie Theater (When We Are Married), Mixed Blood (Agnes Under the Big Top), and Torch Theater (Dangerous Liasons).
Ryan M. Lindberg (Josh) is thrilled to be returning to MJTC for his sixth production. Previous credits at MJTC include The Gospel According to Jerry, Goats, Moonlight and Magnolias, Modern Orthodox, and The Twilight of the Golds. Ryan has appeared around town with the Guthrie Theater (Six Degrees of Separation), Walking Shadow Theatre Company (Squawk, Robots vs. Fake Robots), Park Square Theatre (You Can’t Take It With You), and Gremlin Theater (An Absolute Turkey, Corleone: The Shakespearean Godfather). Ryan is a graduate of the University of Minnesota/Guthrie Theater BFA Actor Training Program.
Miriam Schwartz (Ayelet) is so excited to be working with MJTC for the first time on Handle With Care. She is a Seattle native and graduate from the University of Minnesota/Guthrie Theater BFA Actor Training Program. Some of her favorite past credits include Sonya in Uncle Vanya, Jenny in In Game or Real, Arden in Cinephilia, and multiple roles in Clandestino. Huge thanks to MJTC, her wonderful family, and to all who have supported her in this process.
Hayley Finn (Director) is Associate Producer at the Playwrights’ Center. Twin Cities credits include Compulsion or the House Behind, The Last Word…, The Gospel According to Jerry (MJTC) as well as History Theatre, Pangea World Theater, Workhaus Collective, and Walker Art Center. Other credits: Public Theater, Cherry Lane, New Georges, New Dramatists, Vineyard Theatre, and the premiere of Why We Laugh in Terezin, Prague. She’s an alumna of Drama League Director’s Program, recipient of Ruth Easton Fellowship and TCG New Generations Future Leader grant, and has a B.A. and M.A. from Brown University.
Carl Schoenborn (Scenic Design) is excited for his first opportunity to work with MJTC. He is a designer/actor/technician all over town. Carl is Technical Director, Resident Designer, and a founding member of Gremlin Theatre as well as Staff Electrician at Children's Theatre Company. He designs for St Olaf College, Cretin-Derham Hall, and Osseo High School. His work has also been seen at Bloomington Civic Theatre, Mixed Blood, Walker Art Center, MN Fringe, Nimbus, and others. He will be appearing as the Baker in Into the Woods at Eat Street Players in April and will perform in Urinetown this summer at The Jungle Theater.
Lisa Conley (Costume Design) previously designed Compulsion or the House Behind, Photograph 51, My Mother’s Lesbian Jewish Wiccan Wedding, Our Class, and The Gospel According to Jerry at MJTC. Other credits include Swandive Theatre (Crumble: Lay Me Down, Justin Timberlake, The Baltimore Waltz, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged)), Theatre Unbound (Murderess), and Z Puppets Rosenschnoz (Monkey Mind Pirates). She holds her B.A. from Hamline University and M.F.A. in Design from University of Georgia.
Paul Epton (Lighting Design) discovered theater lighting at Carleton College and was an award-winning designer in Detroit. Since moving to Minneapolis, he’s designed regularly for MJTC (over 40 shows, including Goats, My Name is Asher Lev, Women's Minyan, The Triangle Factory Fire Project, Rose, Old Wicked Songs, The Chosen), Mixed Blood Theatre, Off-Leash Area, Torch Theater, and the Jon Hassler Theater. His design for In the Time of the Butterflies is currently onstage at Mixed Blood.
Anita Kelling (Sound Design) is making her third appearance with MJTC with Handle with Care. Her previous credits include Hanukkah Lights in the Big Sky and The Magic Dreidels. Her most recent work includes Independence with Theatre in the Round, Where We’re Born with 20% Theatre Company, Julius Caesar and The Good Fight at Theatre Unbound, and The Children’s Hour at Sabes JCC. Next up for Anita is Changes in Time for 20% Theatre Company and Appointment with Death at Theatre in the Round.
Kelli Tucker (Stage Manager) previously stage managed Compulsion or the House Behind, Photograph 51, My Mother’s Lesbian Jewish Wiccan Wedding, The Last Word…, Our Class, Goats and others at MJTC. Other stage management credits include Theatre in the Round (The Melville Boys) and Alexandria Area Arts Association (Totally RED!). Kelli is also a freelance director with credits including The Phipps Center (Scheherazade, The Adventures of Peter Rabbit and His Friends, Lyle the Crocodile).
Jason Odell Williams (playwright) originally from Columbia, Maryland, Jason is an award-winning playwright whose work has been produced at The Kitchen Theatre, Gulfshore Playhouse, JCC Centerstage, the DR2 and The Cell. His plays have also had readings and been developed at Primary Stages, The Abingdon Theatre, The Lark, N.J. Rep, Artists 4 Israel, Jewish Cultural Arts Theatre, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Midtown Direct Rep, and The Baltimore Playwrights Festival. After this production, Handle With Care is scheduled to open Off-Broadway this summer, followed by a run at Theatre Jacksonville in December. In February 2014, the play will have its international debut at Teatron Toronto Jewish Theatre. Jason’s play, Significant Others, was one of three winning scripts selected for The 2012 Hudson Valley Writers’ Center New Play Reading Series. An industry reading in January starred two-time TONY Award winner Norbert Leo Butz. Jason currently writes for the TV series Brain Games which begins airing April 21 on the National Geographic Channel. His novel, Personal Statement, a satire about competitive volunteering, will be published this spring by In This Together Media and will be available on Amazon. Jason and his wife, Charlotte Cohn, live in Manhattan and are the proud parents of a beautiful little girl, Imogen. Many thanks to Barbara, Hayley, the cast, and everyone at MJTC! For more please visit www.jasonodellwilliams.com.