A massage therapist and his female client don’t have much in common. Yet as a year passes, they develop trust and treasure their time together. When the client needs extraordinary support from the therapist, their bond is tested considerably. This serious drama also provides surprises and lots of humor.
“Best new play in the Key West Festival. Plays gingerly on the heart.” – South Florida Sun-Sentinel
Mary Anne Bowman has been an actor in Chicago since 1991, appearing with a number of theaters, including The Gift, City Lit, Sideshow, Bailiwick Repertory, Buffalo Theatre Ensemble, Prop Thtr and Babes with Blades. She was last seen onstage in 2017 with Piccolo Theater, in their production of The Memory of Water. She feels immensely blessed to have the opportunity to collaborate with David and Ray on Joe’s exquisite play and gives unending thanks to the man she gave her heart to almost 38 years ago — Michael John Hagedorn, the polestar and center of all things. She dedicates this performance to her mom, Anne Therese McIntyre.
Raymond Nicholas is happy to make his Chicago debut with MASSAGE THERAPY. Born and raised in North Canton, Ohio, Raymond developed a deep fascination for the performing arts at an early age. Whether it was watching films or attending live theater his enthusiasm for storytelling encouraged him to pursue acting as a way to connect with others and evoke emotions through performance. He has studied at Second City, Chicago Actors Studio, and Remy Bumpo Theater. Before completing his education Raymond spent several years overseas in the Army. When not acting, he is a Senior Sourcing Manager for a multinational corporation.
Joe Godfrey is a New York City and Connecticut-based writer. Joe’s play Claptrapp premiered at Emerging Artists Theatre in Manhattan. His play In Good Faith, with Tony-winner George Grizzard, was presented at the National Arts Club in Manhattan and subsequently at the Hudson Showcase Theatre in New York. Massage Therapy was produced at the Red Barn Theatre in Key West and named runner-up in the Eric Bentley New Play Competition. Bed & Breakfast premiered at the Key West Festival and has been produced in Provincetown, Massachusetts and Lexington, Kentucky. Joe’s holiday play, A Queer Carol, (published by Playscripts, Inc.) was presented at the Duplex Cabaret Theatre in Manhattan and later at Seven Stages Theatre in Atlanta, the New Phoenix Theater in Buffalo, the Emerald Theatre in Memphis, the Alternative Theatre of Phoenix, the Wilton Manor Theater of Fort Lauderdale, the Suncoast Theatre of St. Petersburg, the Desert Rose Theatre of Rancho Mirage, California, and the New Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco. Other productions: Communications at The Gallery Players and the National Arts Club; The Call Back at Manhattan Punch Line; Child Support, Village Scene Productions in Montreal (first prize – Playwrights Workshop), Provincetown Playwrights Festival, and Theatre OUTlanta; and Flight at the John Houseman in Manhattan. Joe’s one-acts, Swan Song, Take Two, Beep, Rabbit Ears, and Wild Spots, among others, have been featured in festivals around the country. He has written for the Westchester County Monthly, Washingtonian, New York Times, Harper’s, and is a contributor of humor pieces for the Litchfield County Times. Mr. Godfrey graduated cum laude from Lehigh University, taught English at the Peddie School (New Jersey), and studied writing with Mark O’Donnell and acting with Mel Blanc, Austin Pendleton, and Uta Hagen. He is a member of the Dramatists Guild, the Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights, the Playwrights Division of TOSOS II, AEA, and SAG.
David Zak (Director, MASSAGE THERAPY) has won seven Jeff Awards in Chicago, including four for Directing (ANIMAL FARM, DR. SEX, PARADE, POPE JOAN), two for writing (THE HIROSHIMA PROJECT, THE COUNT OF MONTE CRISTO) and a special Jeff for “Fostering Diversity in Chicago Theater.” In his 27-year stint as Artistic Director of Bailiwick Repertory, he directed the world premiere production of THE CHRISTMAS SCHOONER, the US premieres of Sir Peter Hall’s ANIMAL FARMand JERRY SPRINGER – THE OPERA, and many original works including the political dramas THE HIROSHIMA PROJECT and SIN: A CARDINAL DEPOSED. He has directed in London (THE IRISH CURSE), Seoul (DOLLHOUSE, FANTA STICK, THE GHOST’S COOKBOOK), Dublin (OH, HOLY ALLEN GINSBERG, AT THE FLASH), Boston (SIN: A CARDINAL DEPOSED), Los Angeles (DR. SEX, AT THE FLASH) and New York (MARLOWEand POSEIDON: AN UPSIDE-DOWN MUSICAL). His productions of the American Premieres of JERRY SPRINGER – THE OPERA, Sir Peter Hall’s ANIMAL FARM, PARADE, POPE JOAN, and Dennis DeYoung’s HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME all won the Jeff Award for best musical. His most recent Chicago productions have included: THE BOY FROM OZ, Terrence McNally’s SOME MEN, AFTERGLOW, PRISCILLA: QUEEN OF THE DESERT, THE BOOK OF MERMAN, HIS GREATNESS, and UNDER THE RAINBOW FLAG. He was inducted into Chicago’s Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame in 2013.