The Messenger

Film written and directed by Kade Mendelowitz
May, 2012 (premiere)

The Messenger poster

The Messenger poster

If God sent an Angel to Earth, would you listen to what he had to say? That is the overarching premise of this season’s ambitious production of “The Messenger” by faculty professor Kade Mendelowitz.

After hearing reports of a self proclaimed Angel and Messenger of God, Michael is invited as a guest of America’s latest talk-show phenomenon: “The Jessie Show”. The host, Jessica Lamech, has been facing her own private crisis of faith when this unique opportunity presents itself. The network, recognizing the huge ratings potential of such an event, has heavily advertised a live prime-time special – and you will be surprised where the interview goes from there. Join us for the first joint production of the University of Alaska Fairbanks Theatre & Film Departments.

Designer, playwright, and director Kade Mendelowitz created this multi-faceted production to match the distinctive nature of the programs at UAF. “I have been percolating this idea of combining a show that could be both a live theatre production and movie for a few years now, as we have been developing the Film program. Now that the Film Degree at UAF is official, I felt this was the perfect time to produce this piece.”

Mendelowitz has authored two multimedia educational theatre titles, and produced “Water Stealers” – a platinum award-winning science fiction adventure which premiered at the Goldstream Regal Cinemas in 2004. He’s also created the animated shorts “Hounds” and “Love at First Light” which won “Best in Animation” at the Fairbanks Film Festival.

In 1999 he adapted and directed a production of “Alice in Wonderland” in which the audience actually followed an Alice and White Rabbit through Wonderland. “It was truly wonderful! We had 10 scenes located throughout the Salisbury Theatre complex. The audience had tickets that broke them into groups of 12 spaced 10 minutes apart. Each of 4 Alice’s and 4 Rabbits took each audience group on a 40 minute adventure, each going 3 times. This meant the other characters they visited and interacted with (like the Mad Hatter, Mouse, Queen and Caterpillar) each performed their scene 12 times each night. It was a blast, and the audience loved it! Some parents bought their kids numerous times to see different Alices…but the show sold out quickly…it was a great experience” says Mendelowitz.

Cast & crew list after photo gallery.

A look behind the scenes of “Seeking Guidance” – the most powerful scene from the movie “The Messenger”. Enhanced by special lighting and a few special effects and location management.Behind the scenes of “The Messenger”. While recording the (4) shots for the fictional “Jessie Show” opening; some of the audio was noisy (not a surprise, considering one was AT an active construction site!)
Carrie Baker, Associate Professor of Performance at the University of Alaska Fairbanks Department of Theatre & Film discusses her role portraying Jessie in the original film “The Messenger” by Kade Mendelowitz.Director of Photography and Producer Maya Salganek talks about her experience working on “The Messenger” by Kade Mendelowitz.
Behind the scenes videos
Press articleMovie review - Fairbanks Daily News-MinerMessenger review thumbnail
Press articleMovie review – Fairbanks Daily News-MinerMovie review – UAF Sun Star (student paper)

Parental Guidance Suggested
Due to some mature subject matter, parents are cautioned. The UAF Theatre Department believes that if this production were rated by the Motion Picture Association it would be rated PG-13.
In the movie there is some discussion of a sexual assault. Matters of religion an other complex issues are discussed. Additionally, there is a non-graphic depiction of a sexual assault.
Parents should use their discretion for whether this is appropriate for children under 16.

(in alphabetical order)

Messenger Playbill FinalCarrie Baker as Jessica Lamech
Tricia Bates as Francine Kitchen
Rachel Blackwell as Sports housewife
Llian Breen as Larry Kitchen
Melissa Buchta as Blind Woman
Andrew Cassel as “Bad Guy” & Michael
Jasen Chausse as Kevin Kitchen
“Country” as Rider
Wesley Dalton as Anthony Hall
Danny Dicaire as SportsGuy
Kim Eames as Doctor
Adam Gillette as Testimonial Police Officer
Stephan Golux as Father Andrew
Jordan Guinn as Billy
Annabel Heyne as Jennifer Jonitas
Eric Heyne as Johnathan Jonitas
Marley Horner as Announcer
Glenn Imus as Sleepy Driver
Michael Kingston as Carney Man
Nathaniel Lange as Basketball Player
David Leslie as TextiDriver
Michael McIntyre as Jeremy
Amie Meredith as Barbara
James Opp as Young Basketball Player
Thomas Petrie as Lucas
Stephanie Rivet as Pat
Jack Christopher Sellers as Sports Son
Ashley Thompson as Tamar
Dion Torres as Flowershop Worker
Brian Tuohy as Security Guard
Siri Tuttle as Elizabeth

Production Crew:
Kade Mendelowitz – Writer, Editor, Director
Maya Salganek – Director of Photography & Producer
Bethany Marx – Costume Designer
Christopher Kern – Production Manager
Tiana Hanson – Fall 1st Assistant Director
Kavelina Torres – Summer 1st Assistant Director
Adam Gillette – Technical Director, Props, Set Dresser
Llian Breen – Larry Beats Regardless Electrician, Best Boy
Deleen Cable, David Leslie, Arvia Glass, Carl Sage, Tiana Hanson, Jeff
Buckley, Jon Bracone, Sean Guecco, Amelia Cooper-Davis, Steve Keller,
Monika Kunat, Jeremiah Lafl eur, Richard Reagin, David Riffey
– Grips
Anita Ashbaugh – Special Effects Makeup
Carl Sage – Jessie Show Set Designer
Deirdre Adams – Jessie Show Lighting Designer
Kimberley Eames – Publicity and Box Office
Jeff Buckley, Aaron Gordon – Jib Operators
Jeff Buckley, Aaron Gordon, Tyler McClendon – Steadicam
Christopher Kern, Matthew Hartman, Adrina Knutson, Tyler McClendon – Camera Operators
Nicki Karl, Nicholas Kern, David Riffey – Audio
Jeremiah Cannone – Weaponry Foley Artist
Laura Schlutt – Assistant Stage Manager
Gerri Kern – Makeup Assistant
Jerene Mosier – Costume Shop Manager
Kimberly Eames – Basketball coach and wrangler, craft services