Based on a real life incident, the play concerns the strain on families caring for severely challenged children. Belluso, who died earlier this year at age 36, was confined to a wheelchair, and many of his plays feature a disabled character. A Nervous Smile premiered at the Humana Festival in 2005.
Brenneman received two Emmy Award nominations for her work as Janice Licalsi on NYPD Blue. She later played the recurring role of Faye Moscowitz on Frasier. Last year, she concluded a six-year run as star, producer, and co-creator of Judging Amy. Cohen was most recently seen onstage as part of the Ensemble Studio Theatre's Marathon 2006. O'Connell, an Obie winner for Sustained Excellence of Performance, starred last season in Manic Flight Reaction and Lovely Day. Reuben recently starred in the Public Theater's production of Stuff Happens and is best known for her work on ER.