'Through the Eye of a Needle' by Jami Brandli

Event Date: 

Thursday, July 20, 2017 - 7:30pm

Event Date Details: 

Event Location: 

  • UCSB Studio Theater

Event Price: 


Directed by Risa Brainin

Through the Eye of a Needle is a working class family dramedy about the Keen family dealing with the death of their daughter, Dana, a navy corpsman who recently died in the Iraq War. Larry copes with a tumbler of scotch or five, Barbara stubbornly sets an extra plate setting, while their straight-edge teenage daughter, Samantha, secretly uses Twitter to create a protest on the George Washington Bridge. Much to Larry’s annoyance, the self-righteous Pastor Bill Towers and his fragile wife, Shirley, invite themselves over for Christmas Eve dinner, and then Nasser, an Iraqi refugee, arrives at their door unannounced. They quickly learn he was Dana’s trusted military interpreter and that Dana has given Nasser as a “Christmas gift.” As they fight over to keep Nasser or not, tempers fly and secrets are revealed. Will the Keens be pulled further apart or will they find grace and redemption in this unexpected gift?

Jami Brandli's plays include Technicolor Life, S.O.E., M-Theory, ¡SOLDADERA!, Sisters Three, Through the Eye of a Needle, BLISS (or Emily Post is Dead!) which was named in The Kilroys Top 46 List in 2014. Her work has been produced/developed at New Dramatists, WordBRIDGE, The Lark, New York Theatre Workshop, Great Plains Theatre Conference, LAUNCH PAD, The Antaeus Company, Chalk REP, The Road, among other venues. Winner of John Gassner Memorial Playwriting Award, Holland New Voices Award and Aurora Theatre Company's GAP Prize. Technicolor Life premiered at REP Stage as part of the 2015 Women’s Voices Theater Festival. BLISS (or Emily Post is Dead!) will receive a joint world premiere with Moving Arts, Moxie Theatre and Promethean Theatre starting this fall, 2017. She’s been a finalist for the 2016 PEN Literary Award for Drama, Playwrights’ Center Core Writer Fellowship, Princess Grace Award, O'Neill National Playwrights Conference and the Disney ABC TV Fellowship and was also nominated for the Susan Smith Blackburn Award. Her short works are published with TCG and Smith & Kraus. A proud member of the Playwrights Union, the Antaeus Playwrights Lab, and The Dramatist Guild, Jami teaches dramatic writing at Lesley University's low-residency MFA program. She is represented by the Robert A. Freedman Agency and Gramercy Park Entertainment and is currently developing a TV project with Quaker Moving Pictures. www.jamibrandli.com

Please visit this page for more information about the other plays in our 2017 Summer Reading Series!

This program is supported by the UCSB Summer Sessions Cultural and Enrichment Grant.