THE GOOD JOHN PROCTOR and BECKY NURSE OF SALEM Come to Trinity Repertory Company

Learn more about the upcoming shows here!

By: Aug. 29, 2023
THE GOOD JOHN PROCTOR and BECKY NURSE OF SALEM Come to Trinity Repertory Company

Trinity Repertory Company opens its 60th Anniversary Season with two plays performed in rotating repertory, both dark dramedies with thematic ties to gender, power, and Arthur Miller's The Crucible.  

The Good John Proctor by Talene Monahon, directed by Kimberly Senior, will play September 7 — 15 before taking a brief pause for Becky Nurse of Salem by Sarah Ruhl, directed by Curt Columbus, which begins its run on September 21. Starting September 28, both plays will run in the Dowling Theater on an alternating basis through November 12. Patrons can purchase tickets at, by calling the Ticket Office at (401) 351-4242, or in person at 201 Washington St., Providence. 

“Where Monahon’s The Good John Proctor is more of a prequel to the events of The Crucible, Ruhl’s Becky Nurse of Salem deals with the endless ripples that still impact our national psyche today,” Artistic Director Curt Columbus said. “Both plays revolve around the question – Why are women’s intelligence, adventurousness, and wisdom deemed ‘witchcraft’ or ‘unnatural?’ We hope that what makes this experience unique is how the conversation between these two writers opens a new dialogue around American identity and the space that women occupy in the American story. No small project, but how else would we begin our sixth decade as Rhode Island’s state theater?” 

ABOUT THE GOOD John Proctor 

Perhaps you recall the young women who led the “witch hunt” in Arthur Miller’s The Crucible. But did you know that in reality, “temptress” Abigail Williams was just an 11-year-old girl? Her cousin Betty Parris was an imaginative 9-year-old; while Mercy Lewis was an anxiety-ridden child seeking refuge in alcohol, and Mary Warren an epileptic orphan. When Abigail begins working for 60-year-old farmer John Proctor, their lives unravel from playing with poppets and churning butter into something unexpected. The Good John Proctor reexamines the Salem witch trials through the eyes of the four young girls at its center. 

Kimberly Senior makes her Trinity Rep debut as the production’s director. Senior and Columbus were colleagues at Steppenwolf Theatre Company more than 20 years ago and have built a strong personal and professional relationship since. Senior’s previous work includes the Tony-nominated Broadway production of Disgraced, numerous Off-Broadway and regional credits, and We Go Round and Round for the Brown University/Trinity Rep MFA Program. 

“In The Good John Proctor, we get the opportunity to go back, to speculate, ‘how did we get here?’” Senior said.  “The play presents the side of the story we don't usually get to hear, giving voice to centuries of women whose interior lives were silenced by those who held the pen and wrote the history we've been given thus far. Talene Monahon does this masterfully, with poignancy and humor, in a play that can be as scary as it is moving. I am so excited to explore this play here at Trinity Rep with this amazing, intelligent, artistic community that is Providence. I am overjoyed to be in the company of one of my dearest friends and collaborators Curt, and to be in service of this remarkable story written by Talene.” 


Life’s not so charming for Becky Nurse, a modern descendant of an executed Salem “witch.” She’s been fired from her job, troubled by her granddaughter’s boyfriend, is pining for a married man, and taking pain pills to cope after her daughter’s overdose. To reverse her bad fortune, she consults an eccentric local witch … leading to shocking, funny, and even disturbing results. Becky’s life transforms into a messy dark comedy that explores how far one woman will go to hold onto what she holds dear. Playwright Sarah Ruhl returns to Trinity Rep’s stage with this enchanted exploration of what is real, what is right, and what is redemptive. 


Columbus, who directed last season’s acclaimed run of Sweeney Todd, will helm this production. He said “Sarah Ruhl is a longtime Trinity Rep friend and audience favorite, and one of the most significant and influential playwrights in America in the last twenty years. I have loved Becky Nurse of Salem since I read an early draft several years ago — it is funny, smart, and so incredibly, achingly human that I could not wait to produce it. And in the character of Becky Nurse, Sarah captures an American story that is rarely, if ever seen, on stage. I cannot wait to introduce Trinity Rep audiences to her and this glorious play.” 


While each production involves a separate director and cast, the creative team is shared among both:  Shura Baryshnikov (choreographer and intimacy director), Mark Rose (fight coordinator), Michael McGarty (set designer), Shahrzad Mazaheri (costume designer), Dawn Chiang (lighting designer), and Joanna Lynne Staub (sound designer). 

In The Good John Proctor, four adult actors will bring the youthful spirit of the child characters to life. Resident company member Rachael Warren, who played Mary Warren in 2011’s The Crucible, will reprise the role in this production. Rebecca-Anne Whittaker, a recent graduate of the Brown/Trinity Rep MFA Program in Acting, will portray Betty Parris. Guest artists Deanna Myers and Lori Vega make their Trinity Rep debuts as Abigail Williams and Mercy Lewis, respectively. 

Becky Nurse of Salem features resident company member Angela Brazil as the title character. She’s joined by returning guest artists Alexander Crespo-Rosario II (Sweeney Todd), Rachel Dulude (The Inferior Sex), Benjamin Grills (A Lie of the Mind), Jihan Haddad (Sueño), and Dereks Thomas (August Wilson’s Gem of the Ocean). Meg Thalkin makes her Trinity Rep debut as the Witch. 


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