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Coffeetown Press
Catherine Treadgold

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Open Circle to Premiere The Cut, adapted from Dennis Milam Bensie’s Shorn: Toys to Men (Coffeetown)
On January 14, 2011, Open Circle Theatre premieres The Cut, an adaptation of Shorn: Toys to Men, a memoir by Wigmaker Dennis Milam Bensie. Coffeetown Press will release Shorn on January 1., 12/07/2010 - Seattle, WA.—On January 14, 2011, Open Circle Theatre in Belltown will premiere The Cut, the theatrical version of Shorn: Toys to Men (268 pp, $17.95/paper ISBN: 978-1-60381-092-0), a memoir by Theatrical Hair Designer and Wigmaker Dennis Milam Bensie about his traumatic childhood and subsequent struggles with the compulsion to cut hair. Coffeetown Press will release Shorn on January 1, 2011.

The Cut runs from January 14-February 5, 2011. Performances will take place on Friday and Saturday evenings at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 4 p.m. The Cut was adapted for the stage by Dustin Engstrom and is directed by Gary Zinter. The cast features Michael Harris, William Cole Stevens, Monica Wulzen, Scott Shoemaker, Joan Jankowski, David Rollison, Todd Van Der Ark and Colin Scheiber. Tickets can be purchased at

What shapes a man’s life more? Being molested at age seven, having a gruff father ashamed of him for being effeminate, or being humiliated by school bullies for being a sissy? In the memoir, Shorn: Toys to Men, author Dennis Milam Bensie chronicles his journey from damaged boy, self-medicating by cutting the hair of shoplifted Barbie dolls, to confused young man, paying hundreds of gay street hustlers to shave their heads. Bensie demonstrates how hair can be currency—a moral gauge for good and bad, male and female, lawful and unlawful. The world of theater is his backdrop, a sanctuary where he gradually spins fantasy into reality. After getting his start in community theater, Bensie moves up to professional houses throughout the United States, turning his private sexual conflict over haircutting into a successful career as a skilled theatrical wig designer. Humorous and honest, this book is a uniquely tangled love story, a triumphant quest for love, forgiveness and self-acceptance.

Dennis Milam Bensie holds a degree in Theatre Costume Design from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and completed an apprenticeship in theatrical wig construction at Los Angeles Opera. He has costumed and wigged shows all over the country. Dennis also teaches master classes in wigmaking and wig maintenance around the country. He has been on staff at Intiman Theatre in Seattle since 1992. Check out his website:

Shorn will be available in Kindle ($6.95) and print editions on,,, and Other ebook versions will be sold on Smashwords. Books can also be ordered through and Ingram. Hardcover ($25.95) editions will be available through Baker & Taylor.

ABOUT Coffeetown Press—Based in Seattle, Washington, Coffeetown Press has been publishing the finest fiction and nonfiction since 2005.

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