Monster Box opens season with ‘Hand To God’
WATERFORD, Mich.–Monster Box Theatre here will kick off its 2018-19 season this week with Hand to God, a play written by Robert Askins. The play was produced Off-Broadway in 2011 and 2014 and on Broadway in 2015. The Broadway production received five Tony Award nominations, including for Best New Play.
The production will run October 26 to November 11.
Hand to God is an “irreverent puppet comedy …about a possessed Christian-ministry puppet.” Author Robert Askins said that “Hand to God is an expression about honesty. It’s a southern regionalism that’s fairly unknown in the North.”
In the devoutly religious, relatively quiet small town of Cypress, Texas, Margery is a widow whose husband has recently died. To keep her occupied, her minister, Pastor Greg, has asked her to run the puppet club. Fundamentalist Christian congregations often use puppets to teach children how to follow the Bible and avoid Satan. The teenage members of the club are her son Jason; Jessica, the girl next door that Jason has a crush on; and Timmy, the neighborhood troublemaker whose mother is attending Alcoholics Anonymous meetings at the church. Pastor Greg wants the puppet club to put on a performance at the church next Sunday. The characters become sexually attracted to each other. Jason’s hand puppet, Tyrone, takes on a life of his own, announces that he is Satan, leads them into sin, and expresses secrets that the characters would rather have left unacknowledged.