Cast announced for HANDS ON A HARDBODY at Minneapolis Musical Theater


Minneapolis Musical Theater returns to the proverbial stage this spring with “Hands on a Hardbody.” The musical, about 10 unlucky Texans vying to win a new pickup truck in a radio contest, will be produced at the Luther Cadillac showroom (2325 Prior Ave N in Roseville, MN) from April 22 through April 8. May 2022. Tickets ($10 to $45) are on sale now at www.aboutmmt.org.

Following the success of MMT’s past productions at non-traditional venues – “High Fidelity” at Electric Fetus in 2018 and “Daddy Long Legs” at the James J. Hill House in 2020 – MMT is grateful to Luther Automotive for another opportunity to to bring a unique theatrical experience to audiences in the Twin Cities.

“The past two years have taken a toll on everyone for a myriad of reasons, and while the specific circumstances of ‘Hands on a Hardbody’ are different, I think audiences will find a kinship with these characters,” says Joe , artistic director of MMT. Henden. “They’re all hoping for a better life – whatever that means to them. The characters, the music – it’s a wonderful slice of Americana that explores our common humanity. In a nutshell – it’s about hope.”

“Hands on a Hardbody” features book by Doug Wright, lyrics by Amanda Green, and music by Trey Anastasio and Amanda Green. It is inspired by the actual events of the acclaimed 1997 documentary of the same name by SR Bindler, produced by Kevin Morris and Bindler. MMT’s production will be directed by Sara Pillatzki-Warzeha (“Be More Chill”, “High Fidelity”, “Leap of Faith”) with musical direction by Jean Orbison Van Heel (“Daddy Long Legs”, “Night of the Living Dead! The Musical!”) and choreography by Abbi Fern (“Lizzie”, “Be More Chill”, “High Fidelity”).

The cast of “Hands on a Hardbody” includes:

Christy Johnson in her MMT debut – playing Norma Valverde

Jenny Ramirez in her MMT debut – playing Janis Curtis

Brandon Cayetano, previously seen with MMT in “Minne-Musicals” – playing Jesús Peña

Christian Unser, former artistic director of MMT and last seen with MMT in “Minne-Musicals” and “Night of the Living Dead! The Musical” – playing JD Drew

Marie Finch-Koinuma, making her MMT debut – playing Kelly Mangrum

James Lane, making his MMT debut – playing Benny Perkins

Emily Rosenberg, making her MMT debut – playing Greg Wilhote

Kyle Doherty, making his MMT debut – playing Chris Alvaro

Roland Hawkins II, making his MMT debut – playing Ronald McCowan

Cassie Utt, making her MMT debut – Heather Stovall

Aly O’Keeffe, last seen with MMT in “Minne-Musicals” and “Night of the Living Dead! The Musical” – playing Virginia Drew

Gianna Schiller, last seen with MMT in ‘High Fidelity’ – playing Cindy Barnes

John Goodrich, making his MMT debut – playing Frank Nugent

Steven Ramirez, making his MMT debut – playing Don Curtis/Dr. Stokes

Charlie Morgan, last seen with MMT in “High Fidelity” – playing Mike Ferris

Elyssa Bickford, making her MMT debut – playing an Ensemble member

Anissa Lubbers, previously seen with MMT in “Minne-Musicals” – playing an Ensemble member

Keaton Lane, making his MMT debut – playing an Ensemble member

The Broadway production was nominated for several awards in 2013, including three 2013 Tony Awards, including Best Original Score, 2013, nine 2013 Drama Desk Awards, including Outstanding Musical, Book, Music and Lyrics, and three 2013 Outer Critics Circle Awards, including Outstanding New Broadway Musical and Outstanding New Score. HANDS ON A HARDBODY is presented by arrangement with Concord Theatricals. www.concordtheatricals.com

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