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'Managing Maxine' Now Playing at Alliance Theatre Through 11/2

Managing Maxine, a World Premiere by Janece Shaffer, directed by Susan V. Booth will play at the Alliance Theatre from October 8 - November 2, 2008

Is it ever too late to fall in love? Ask 70 year-old Maxine Levine and she will tell you whole-heartedly, “Hell no!” Be there when this outspoken, outrageous woman falls in love -- passionately, soulfully -- for the first time in her life and watch all of those around her reel from the complications. Filled with humor, tenderness and confusion that is a part of any first love – even one at 70.

Ross Bickell (Arthur) Broadway: Noises Off, The Iceman Cometh, A Few Good Men. Off-Broadway: Deathbed, The Madras House, Waste, Durango, Remembrance, Privates on Parade, Somewhere in the Pacific, The Crucible, Down by the Ocean. Regional credits include more than 200 productions at such theaters as the Long Wharf, Hartford Stage, Pittsburgh Public, City Theatre, Cape Playhouse, Arena Stage, Alley Theatre, Huntington Theatre, Philadelphia Theatre Company, The Kennedy Center, Guthrie Theater, Cincinnati Playhouse, The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis and The O'Neill Theater Center. Film/TV include: Airport '77, Major Payne and The Pleasure of Your Company; repeat offender on all the “Law & Order”s; “Wonder Woman,” “Fantasy Island,” “Chappelle’s Show” and many other cancelled series. Proud winner of the Golden Donkey Award for “Stangers With Candy.”

Courtenay Collins (Emmie) returns to the Alliance where she recently appeared in Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris and The Fourth Wall. New York: Mary Bland/Eating Raoul, Moth/Loves’ Labors Lost, Christine/Phantom of the Opera (National/European Tour), Babette/Beauty and the Beast (Toronto Company). Regional: Maggie/Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Fiona/Brigadoon, Julie/Showboat, Juilliard – Group 18. Atlanta: Evita/Evita (Atlanta Lyric), Kate/Love Jerry (Actor’s Express, Suzi Bass Nomination), Jerry’s Girls (Atlanta Lyric), Featured Performer AGMC (They Had it Coming, Babes in Boyland). From Montreal to Chicago to Highlands to Charleston, Courtenay performs her cabaret shows in numerous venues across the country. Recorded four solo CDs offstage. Private vocal coach, high school musical director/choreographer, co-director of thriving children’s musical theatre camp, founder of Mamma Sez Productions, proud mommy of Collins and Spencer and loves her husband Michael!

Howard Elfman (Louis) happily returns to the Alliance where in 2006 he appeared in the World Premiere of Bluish (also by Janece) on the Hertz Stage. He recently played Henry Morgenthau in the Gablestage production of The Accomplices. Last year he was in Brooklyn Boy at the Olney Theatre Center (for which he received a Carbonell Award nomination for the 2006 Gablestage production). Also last year Howard appeared in The Chosen at the Hippodrome State Theatre and in Deathtrap at the Maltz Theatre. A transplanted Chicagoan now based in Ft. Lauderdale, he has appeared in many top-rated theatres across the country. Among favorite roles are the Old Man in Fool for Love, Judge Brack in Hedda Gabler, Boolie in Driving Miss Daisy, Mr. Cobb in Cobb, Herman Lewis in Mixed Emotions, Flo Ziegfeld in Funny Girl and Henry Ford in Camping with Henry and Tom. Film and TV credits include Each Time I Kill, Raw Deal, A Day in the Country, Rent-a-Cop, The Untouchables, Aaron Spelling’s “Safe Harbor” and the recent HBO film Recount. Howard is a proud member of AEA, SAG and AFTRA, as well as Georgia’s happy husband.

LARRY LARSON (Larry) was last seen at the Alliance in Gem of the Ocean. Larson’s previous Alliance credits include Glengarry Glen Ross, The Bench, Below the Belt, God’s Man in Texas, Light Up the Sky, Shadowlands, Grapes of Wrath, Noises Off and Another Part of the Forest. On the national and international scene, Larson co-wrote and performed plays for the Southern Theatre Conspiracy, including the HBO/TCG award-winning Tent Meeting, which went on to productions at Actors Theatre of Louisville, the Spoleto Festival, The Kennedy Center and off-Broadway at Astor Place Theatre. His film and television credits include The Ordeal of Dr. Mudd; For Us the Living; Six Pack; Door to Door; My Father, My Son; Murderous Intent; “Breaking Away;” “The Bill Tush Show” and the recent Disney feature film Mr. 3000. Larson is currently the host of The Morning Show on AM1690 – The Voice of the Arts.

JUDY LEAVELL (Joanne) This is Judy’s first appearance at the Alliance, but she has performed in Atlanta for several years at ART Station (Bingo: The Musical; The Lady With All the Answers; Driving Miss Daisy; Mama Makes Up Her Mind; and The Exact Center of the Universe among others), Theatrical Outfit (Shiloh Rules), Horizon Theatre (The Spitfire Grill), Jewish Theatre of the South (From Door to Door), and Georgia Ensemble Theatre (Steel Magnolias), as well as the Springer Opera House in Columbus, GA (On Golden Pond, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Enchanted April). Regional credits include Denver Center Theatre Company (inaugural season), Arizona Theatre Company and Mill Mountain Theatre. Film  credits include The Brooke Ellison Story, Two Weeks, The Last Adam and Wherever You Are.

COURTNEY PATTERSON (Ivy) An Atlanta native, Courtney is excited to be returning to the Alliance Theatre. Audiences may remember her from Eurydice (Loud Stone), Who’s Afraid of Virginia  Woolf? (Honey), Frame 312 (Margie/Marie), Light Up the Sky (Nan Lowell) and Wit (LabTech/Ensemble). She was also seen in the recent TYA productions of Go, Dog. Go! and The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales. Other favorite Atlanta credits include Twelfth Night (Viola), Hamlet (Ophelia), A Streetcar Named Desire (Stella) and Metamorphoses (Aphrodite/Hunger) at Georgia Shakespeare; Lost Highway (Audrey Williams) at Theatrical Outfit; The Importance of Being Earnest (Gwendolyn) at Theatre in the Square; and Last of the Red Hot Lovers (Elaine/Bobbi/Jeanette) at Aurora Theatre. Courtney is an Artistic Associate with Georgia Shakespeare and a proud member of Actors’ Equity.

Jana Robbins (Maxine) is thrilled to make her Alliance debut and to be working with Susan Booth again, having been directed by her in The As If Body Loop at the 2007 Humana Festival in Louisville. Jana has played leading roles on Broadway in Good News, I Love My Wife, Crimes of the Heart, Romance/Romance, Gypsy (standby for Tyne Daly) and The Tale of the Allergist’s Wife (covering Linda Lavin and Michele Lee). In the National Tour of Allergist’s Wife she starred opposite Valerie Harper. Many regional credits in both plays and musicals include: Bessie Berger in Awake and Sing (Arena Stage), Side by Side by Sondheim (Seattle Rep.) and House of Bernarda Alba (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park). Film includes: The Women (2008) with Annette Benning and Meg Ryan and The Last Days of Frankie the Fly with Dennis Hopper and Keifer Sutherland. TV includes: “Law & Order,” “Law & Order: SVU,” “Law & Order: Criminal Intent,” “Roseanne” and “Babylon 5,” among others, and a recent recurring role on “One Life to Live.” Jana was also one of the producers of Little Women on Broadway and the off-Broadway hit I Love You Because. Unlock’d (winner of the Best of the Fest Award at NYMF ’07) is Broadway bound for the 2010 season. For more info go to

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