Hand to God

Hand to God

Hand to God

By Robert Askins
Directed by David Ivers
Main Season · Peet’s Theatre
February 3–March 19, 2017
West Coast premiere

Be not deceived: The devil is lurking at the Christian Puppet Ministry in Cypress, Texas. And his name is…Tyrone. He may look like an innocent sock puppet, but when he infiltrates the angst-ridden church youth group and takes possession of Jason’s arm, well, all hell breaks loose. Spectacularly foul-mouthed and wickedly scandalous, Tyrone shocks the congregation with his outrageous insinuations, exposing their deepest secrets—and teaching us all about love, grief, and what it means to be human. This fast-paced irreverent comedy is “darkly delightful,” declares the New York Times.

We expect this show to include one 15-minute intermission. We’ll update this information, and add running time, once we have confirmation.

Berkeley Rep offers an advisory about any stage effect of potential concern to patrons’ health. We will post this information as soon as it’s available. We don’t offer advisories about subject matter, as sensitivities vary from person to person. If you have any concerns about content, please contact the box office.


Season sponsors

BARTPeet’s CoffeeWells Fargo

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Current ticket prices

Premium: $57–97 · Section A: $50–81 · Section B: $29–65

Prices are subject to change at any time. Generally, your best bet is to buy early. Weeknight tickets tend to cost less than weekends. For the consistently lowest prices, see any three or more subscription plays.

Hand to God calendar

Creative team

Robert Askins was born in Cypress, Texas in 1980. He moved to New York in 2005. He has received two EST/Sloan grants, and an Arch and Bruce Davis Award for Playwriting. He has been commissioned by Divercity Theatre and Baylor University. Rob’s play Princes of Waco was produced and developed by Youngblood. His play Matthew and the Pastor’s Wife was a part of Marathon 2010 at the Ensemble Studio Theatre, of which he is a member.

David Ivers directed One Man, Two Guvnors at Berkeley Rep in 2015, and is the artistic director of Utah Shakespeare Festival.

Stay tuned for future casting and creative team announcements.

[A] foul-mouthed, fun-packed play about the urges that drive good men (and women, and boys) to dirty deeds…Mr. Askins possesses a perfect ear for teenage voices and the aggressive jostling for position among troubled or misfit adolescents.”

New York Times (first off-Broadway run)

Almost as disturbing as it is uproarious…ferociously funny…”

New York Times (second off-Broadway run)

Mr. Askins’s black comedy about the divided human soul…stands out as a misfit both merry and scary, and very welcome…Hand to God is not a horror story, or at least not a horror story in which the forces of evil are supernatural. What makes the play so sneakily resonant is how Mr. Askins exposes the base impulses, the sexual, self-destructive, potentially violent ones, that just about everyone harbors to some small degree…You can enjoy Hand to God merely as a festival of filthy hilarity, like The Book of Mormon. But as I watched the play this year, for the third time, I found myself peering more closely into its psychological depths, and finding in it a weird mirror of our unsettling times.”

New York Times (Broadway run)

At once a grizzly thriller, a crazily hilarious puppet drama with nods to Avenue Q and a moving exploration of a young, churchgoing adult crying out for help, [Hand to God] is a horror shocker, good date-night fun for college kids, and a deeply compassionate work of theater about ordinary Americans struggling with loss and trying to find their way in the spiritual dark…[It] offer[s] a great deal of outlandish, unpretentious, R-rated craziness…I was blown away.”

Chicago Tribune

It entertains the devil out of you.”

Time Out New York

A scabrously funny scenario that steadily darkens into suspense and Grand Guignol horror, this fiery clash of the id, ego and superego is also an audacious commentary on the uses of faith, both to comfort and control us.”

Hollywood Reporter

Docent talks and discussions

Pre-show docent talks

Meet us in the Theatre an hour before the show on Tuesdays and Thursdays for an engrossing presentation about your subscription-season play. Hear about the playwright’s perspective, dive into the historical context, and discover why the script is relevant right now. Each 30-minute talk includes plenty of time for your questions.

Post-show docent-led discussions

Join your fellow audience members after all matinees and share your thoughts on the show.

Interested in becoming a docent? Click here for details. For more information about Berkeley Rep’s docent program, please email docent@berkeleyrep.org.

Teen Night

Teen Night gives local teens the opportunity to meet for dinner and a behind-the-scenes discussion with a member of the artistic team before attending each subscription-season production at an extremely discounted price.

  • Friday, February 3, 2017

Teen Night begins at 6:30pm at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre. Tickets are $10. Learn more. To reserve your space, call Teen Council at 510 647–2984 or email teencouncil@berkeleyrep.org.

Post-show discussions

Stick around after select performances for lively Q&A sessions with our artists on Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday nights.

  • Thursday, February 23, 2017
  • Tuesday, February 28, 2017
  • Friday, March 10, 2017