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Witchcraft Panic in Connecticut Comes to Life Jan. 20 at the Palace

Updated: Feb 6

Jan. 20. The Last Night written and performed by Debra Walsh and Virginia Wolf, directed by Bryan Swormstedt.

Gracewell Productions presents The Last Night, written and performed by Debra Walsh and Virginia Wolf Saturday, Jan. 20, 2024 at 2 pm at the Palace Theater's PoliClub room as part of season 3 of the Table Readings Series.

The Last Night, originally commissioned by Andres Verzosa at the Stanley-Whitman House in Farmington, imagines real Connecticut women Mary Barnes and Rebecca Greensmith, jailed together the night before their hanging for witchcraft.   Historical accuracy, combined with  informed conjecture where there were no historical records led to a script that explores not only the facts of the Hartford Witchcraft Panic, but the hearts and souls of two women who lived, were accused, and were hanged on Jan. 25, 1663. The original reading of this work won a Certificate of Merit from the Connecticut League of History Organizations. 

What attendees will see Jan. 20 is a fully developed and staged performance directed by Bryan Swormstedt. This season of Table Readings really are what producer Lauren Yarger is calling "Next Stage" readings, because the Palace presentations will be the last reading where feedback will be taken from the audience. After this presentation, the plays will be headed to full stage productions.

About Virginia Wolf and HERSTORY THEATER, LLC

What started as in 2011 a theater company dedicated to bringing unsung heroines of history to life (women accused of witchcraft in early Connecticut, a loyal maid to Mark Twain) has  become a production company for many different and exciting projects.  Some celebrate women, as in Love, Loss and What I Wore, 12 Angry Women;  some honor others in history, such as The Guys,  a 9/11 play; some are just fun, such as A Howl of a Night and  It’s a Wonderful Life, a Live Radio Play and some stretch us in ways we never imagined, such as the staged reading of the full length musical The Resurrectionists.  

Coming up next: Saturday, April 13, 2024


Seating for the Table Readings series is free, limited and by invitation only. To request seats, contact

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