In August 1831, Nat Turner led a slave uprising that shook the conscience of the nation. Turner’s startling account of his prophecy and the insurrection was recorded and published by attorney Thomas R. Gray. This timely play imagines Turner’s final night in a jail cell in Jerusalem, Virginia, as he is revisited by Gray and they reckon with what has passed, and what the dawn will bring. Woven with vivid imagery and indelible lyricism, Nat Turner in Jerusalem examines the power of an individual’s resolute convictions and their seismic reverberations through time.
Thomas R. Gray / Guard
Nathan Alan Davis
Nathan Alan Davis (Playwright) Nathan’s plays include: The High Ground (upcoming at Arena Stage), Nat Turner in Jerusalem (New York Theatre Workshop; Stavis Playwright Award), Dontrell Who Kissed the Sea (NNPN Rolling World Premiere; Steinberg/ATCA New Play Citation), and The Wind and the Breeze (Cygnet Theatre; Blue Ink Award, Lorraine Hansberry Award). He received a Windham-Campbell Prize in 2021. Other recent honors include: The Lark Venturous Fellow (2021-22), Steinberg Playwright Award (2020), Sundance at Ucross Fellow (2019), and Whiting Award (2018). Nathan is a Lecturer in Theater and Berlind Play.wright-in-Residence at Princeton University. He is an alumnus of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Indiana University Bloomington, and The Juilliard School.
Rodney Witherspoon II
Rodney Witherspoon II (Director) is an actor, writer, director, and teaching artist. He is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley and is currently attending the Brown/Trinity Rep MFA Acting program. His play, Tidwell, or the Plantation Play, is published by Samuel French, Inc. He has worked with companies across the country, including Berkeley Repertory Company, Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, Mixed Magic Theatre, Wilbury Theatre Group, ART Station, and Marietta’s New Theatre in the Square.
The Actors and Stage Managers of this production are members of the Actors’ Equity Association, the union of professional actors and stage managers in the United States.
The Scenic and Lighting Designer of this production is represented by United Scenic Artists Local USA-829 of the IATSE.
NAT TURNER IN JERUSALEM
by Nathan Alan Davis
directed by Rodney Witherspoon II
August 13 – September 5, 2021 | Previews August 11 -12
Wednesday – Sunday Evenings at 7:00
on our new Garden Stage
“The sparse, persuasive two-hander examines America’s racial history, but feels disturbingly close to the present day.” – The Village Voice
“The most interesting part of the creative exercise is not the activity inside Turner’s cell, but the breadth of its implications about our relationship with history as a whole— whether 200 years past or flooding your Twitter feeds as we speak.” – TheaterMania