Houston Matters

Hand to God: Cypress Native Takes on Grief and Religion With Puppets

Houston native Robert Askins is the playwright behind Hand to God, a dark comedy set in his hometown of Cypress. It tells the story of a young man involved in the puppet ministry at his church, when his puppet – named Tyrone – becomes possessed by the devil. It’s a scenario The New Yorker described […]

Hand to God - Robert Askins - Courtesy Alley TheatreHouston native Robert Askins is the playwright behind Hand to God, a dark comedy set in his hometown of Cypress.

It tells the story of a young man involved in the puppet ministry at his church, when his puppet – named Tyrone – becomes possessed by the devil. It's a scenario The New Yorker described as "Sesame Street meets The Exorcist."

The play, which blends humor and grief, was nominated for five Tony Awards in 2015 and is in its Houston debut at The Alley Theatre through Sept. 18, 2016.

Askins tells us about the play and about his own experience with puppet ministry.

(Above: Actor Steve Pacek plays Jason and his unruly puppet, Tyrone. Image Courtesy: The Alley Theatre)

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Michael Hagerty

Michael Hagerty

Senior Producer, Houston Matters

Michael Hagerty is the senior producer for Houston Matters. He's spent more than 20 years in public radio and television and dabbled in minor league baseball, spending four seasons as the public address announcer for the Reno Aces, the Triple-A affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks.

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