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Anatomy of a Hug Features Allison Sell
The Bridge Initiative’s inaugural mounting is the world premiere of New York playwright Kat Ramsburg’s Anatomy of a Hug which will feature Allison Sell, well known to Phoenix audiences from her many stints on the stages of Southwest Shakespeare Company (including Equivocation, Uncle Vanya, As You Like It, King Lear). Joining Sell is Melvina Jones, a recent transplant to the Valley from San Francisco, whose professional credits include work with Berkeley Repertory Theatre; Toni Jourdan, most recently seen in Twelfth Night with Class 6; and Phil Weaver-Stoesz, an MFA candidate (in directing) at ASU. The production is helmed by Amanda Noel Trombley, who directed How I Learned to Drive for Class 6 at the Mesa Arts Center earlier this year.
The design team is equally talent rich. Emmy winner Kara Thomson will design the set, and she is joined by fellow MCC faculty member costume designer Mallory Maria Prucha. Media elements are by Daniel Fine, MFA graduate from ASU, who is currently working at San Diego REPertory Theatre. In keeping with The Bridge Initiative’s mission of mentorship, the lighting and sound designers are students Cameron Bennett and Ryan Lee Kirkpatrick.
Anatomy of a Hug explores what happens when a convict (Jourdan) receives Compassionate Release from her prison sentence into her daughter Amelia (Sell)’s care. A lifetime of living vicariously through her beloved TV characters doesn’t prepare Amelia for the actual drama of her mother’s return or the advances of a charming co-worker (Weaver-Stoesz). The ticking clock of her mother’s illness means Amelia must decide if her fictional life is safer than the possibility of her own story.
Performances on Friday, June 19th at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, June 20th at 2:30 & 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday, June 21st at 2:30 p.m.. Ramsburg is flying in from New York for the premiere and will participate in a talkback after the Saturday evening performance.
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