Guest host Michael Cerveris presents stories in which trusting your senses is important. In Jeanne Dixon’s “Blue Waltz with Coyotes,” a rebellious farm girl flirts with danger. Dixon reflects her own upbringing in this picturesque tale—she was born in Montana and lived on a variety of ranches and farms as a child. She’s a published author of young-adult books, including The Ghost of Spirit Riverand Savages, as well as short stories and essays.
It’s read by Mia Dillon. Dillon is a frequent SELECTED SHORTS reader, has appeared on Broadway “Crimes of the Heart,” “Agnes of God,” “The Corn is Green,” “Three Sisters,” and “Our Town.” On television, Dillon was featured in “Mary and Rhoda” and the “Law & Order” franchise. Her screen credits include “The Money Pit,” “A Shock to the System,” “Gods and Generals,” and “Duane Hopwood.”
Aimee Bender has created a fairy tale for our time in “The Color Master,” the second work on this show. It’s loosely based on the 17th century story by Charles Perrault, “Donkeyskin,” but Bender’s focus is the aging master of a crafts guild that creates clothes that mirror nature. The story is the title work of Bender’s newest collection. She is also the author The Girl in the Flammable Skirt, Willful Creatures, An Invisible Sign of My Own, and The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake.
The reader, Denis O’Hare, has appeared in many films, including “Milk,” “Dallas Buyers Club,” “Michael Clayton,” “Duplicity,” “Garden State,” and “Changeling.” He won a Tony Award for his performance in Richard Greenberg’s “Take Me Out” and a Drama Desk Award for his role in “Sweet Charity.” His television credits include “American Horror Story,” “True Blood,” “The Good Wife,” “The Comedians,” and “This Is Us.” He was recently seen on the PBS series “American Masters,” interpreting the works of Edgar Allan Poe.
On his website, O’Hare writes of his love of “The magic of make believe,” and that love is evident in his nuanced reading of this piece.