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originally published: 18.06.2022

(New Brunswick, New Jersey) — Thinking and verse will present You will not in New Brunswick from September 16 to October 8 at the St. John’s Assembly Hall. This is a performance that reimagines the unsolved Hall-Mills double murder of 1922! The performances begin on the centenary of the tragedy.

In 1922, near the banks of the Raritan River, a small town priest and singer were killed in the most infamous unsolved double murder of the 20th century. Incompetent police officers, politicians, and New Jersey’s poorest and most powerful families were consumed by the circus that followed. Thinkery & Verse, working with the Church of St. John the Evangelist, now presents You will nota nightmarish narrative seen through the perspective of Charlotte Mills, a young woman desperately trying to find her mother’s killer.

You will not theatrical study of real events. As a guest at St. John the Evangelist, viewers will meet the Reverend Edward Hall, Mrs. White. Francis Hall, Eleanor Mills, and all the main characters in New Brunswick in 1922. The audience is in for a dark and surreal journey through the events that led to and followed the brutal murders of the “priest and singer”. “circus” that surrounded him. You will not is a re-evaluation of history, community complicity, and a poignant exploration of female voices long silenced. The production of this play will be location-specific, itinerant and immersive.

For years, the male-dominated sacristy prevented the church of St. John the Evangelist from discussing the murders. Now the sacristy is mostly women, so they don’t just talk about it, they sponsored this play – Women do not hide the violence against women. Martha Godfrey, a member of the St. John’s sacristy, reflects on the tragedy: “The Hall-Mills case has been hanging over our heads for a long time. People used to get mad at you for talking about it. I think, as a community, we should come forward with this. The play is the way to do it.” Organist Dr. Susan Haslaj agrees, adding, “Why shouldn’t we be allowed to talk about it? It’s the way the community looks at us, even though it was a long time ago – before any of us, of course. But growing up here, we knew the people involved. It’s not good to have in your past.”

Tickets are $45 and available for purchase online. The St. Johns Assembly Hall is located at 189 George Street in New Brunswick, New Jersey.

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Cast: Karen Alvarado*, Andrew Bainbridge, Erin Bogert, Celine Dykes, Frank Dolce*, Gio Guneil, Johnny Cavanagh, John M. Meyer, Caitlin Ormerod, Rebecca Servon, Lazarus Simmons, Anya Upstill. * Appears with permission from the Actors Capital Association.

The creative team includes John M. Meyer (Co-Director), Karen Alvarado (Co-Director), Jackie Mercer (Production Supervisor), Sarah Woods (Lighting Designer), Ariana Papin (Costume Designer), Shawn Ulmer (Music Supervisor), Henry Strelo (DOP), Erin Bogert (Development Director), Ashley Basil (set design and props), Ryan Murphy (marketing consultant).

Thinking and verse strive to stage classic, politically conscious plays that challenge us to be empowered, globally oriented citizens with a keen awareness of the high stakes of modern life. While their main mission is to create new plays, one of our key creative methods is to put our plays in the repertoire with the classics, thus challenging their writers and actors to reach new heights of creativity and aesthetics. Thinkery & Verse LLC – Sponsored Project Shattered Atlasnon-profit organization serving the arts.

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