Theatre faculty Jesse Hinson and alumnus Michael Underhill ’10 are making their acting debuts at the award-winning Nora Theatre Company in Photograph 51 running through April 14. The 2015 play by Anna Ziegler is part of the Brit d’Arbeloff Women in Science Production Series. Katelynn Kelly CAMD ’22 is currently doing an arts administration co-op at The Nora. She is the second theatre student to co-op at the theatre this year.
Based on a true story, Photograph 51 is set in 1952 London. British biophysicist Rosalind Franklin was a research associate at King’s College, where her X-ray imaging has revealed DNA’s double helix structure. That discovery led to the Nobel Prize – not for her, but for three men who worked with her: Francis Crick, James Watson, and Maurice Wilkins. Recounting the competitive chase to map the DNA molecule, Photograph 51 explores gender bias in the science field. One of the few bright spots in her research is Franklin’s relationship with American structural biologist Don Caspar (played by Hinson), who admires and respects her accomplishments.
Hinson explains: “It’s been an honor to have the opportunity to tell Dr. Franklin’s story on a nightly basis and bring awareness to her work and legacy. Hopefully, this production restores some of the recognition she was denied and so rightfully deserves.”
Jesse Hinson is an Assistant Teaching Professor at Northeastern. Previous acting credits include Merrimack Repertory Theatre: Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley. SpeakEasy Stage Company: Shakespeare in Love. Actors’ Shakespeare Project: Exit the King, The Tempest, The Winter’s Tale, King Henry VI Part 2, The Comedy of Errors, As You Like It, Pericles, Twelfth Night, Antony and Cleopatra. New Repertory Theater: The Whipping Man, Holiday Memories. Greater Boston Stage Company: Seminar, Miracle on 34th Street. The Sandra Feinstein-Gamm Theater: As You Like It, Arcadia, The Winter’s Tale, Morality Play. Berkshire Theatre Group: The Puppetmaster of Lodz, Moonchildren, Macbeth, The Einstein Project, A Christmas Carol. Georgia Shakespeare: Twelfth Night, Romeo and Juliet, Macbeth, Much Ado About Nothing, Coriolanus, Cymbeline.
Michael Underhill plays James Watson and is also making his Central Square Theater and Nora Theatre Company debut with Photograph 51. His recent credits include Man In The Ring (Huntington Theatre Company), Richard III (Commonwealth Shakespeare Company), School for Scandal (Actors’ Shakespeare Project), The Hotel Nepenthe (Brownbox Theatre Project), Hairy Tales (imaginary beasts), and Dog Sees God (Happy Medium Theatre), as well as productions at SpeakEasy Stage Company, Greater Boston Stage Company, Whistler in The Dark, Maiden Phoenix, Bad Habit Productions, Theatre on Fire and Apollinaire Theatre Company. MichaelJamesUnderhill.com @michaeljamesunderhill
Photograph 51 plays at Central Square Theater, 450 Massachusetts Avenue. Tickets may be purchased by calling 617.576.9278 x1, at the Central Square Theater box office or online at CentralSquareTheater.org