When The Exonerated debuted in New York, it was hailed as “The #1 play of the year…intense and deeply affecting,” by the New York Times. This makes sense, given the harrowing (and completely true) subject matter of the play: six death row inmates who are proven innocent before they are executed. The play is told in the words of those who lived this terrifying reality. It’s an incredible example of documentary theater at its finest—and through next weekend, you can still catch it at Vagabond Players.
Vagabond Players is the oldest continuously running little theater in the country. Perhaps that’s how they’re able to secure such great talent for shows as intense as this one. DC Metro Theater Arts gave the production five stars, saying that “The way each of these actors takes on the persona of an exonerated is breathtaking to behold; a true performing force that shakes the audience to its emotional core….Here’s a stunning production that will force you to look at life from a different angle.” Certainly, sitting in the audience of this play, you’d be hard pressed not to see things a little differently by the time you walk out of the theater. For as miraculous as the six stories told on stage are, the play implicitly poses the question: how many others have not been as fortunate? The question nags at one well after the play is over.
The Exonerated runs at Vagabond Players(806 S. Broadway in Baltimore) through July 6th. The production is recommended for mature audiences. For more information, visit www.vagabondplayers.org.
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