Written by David Lee White, Richard Bradford, and the students at Hedgepeth-Williams Middle School of the Arts, Janet Wide Awake: The Hedgepeth-Williams Dream recounts the historic moments in the 1940s, when Gladys Hedgepeth and Berline Williams challenged the Trenton school formerly known as Junior High No. 2 and its policy of segregation after their children were not admitted due to their race.

After a historic legal battle, the New Jersey Supreme Court struck down the widespread practice of segregation in New Jersey public schools.

Over the past six months, Passage Theatre has partnered with Hedgepeth-Williams Middle School of the Arts to complete a residency wherein Passage teaching artists have worked with 17 seventh-grade students to write an original show based on the history of their school and its name. These students will now join a professional director, actors, designers, and management team to fully mount the production, featuring the students onstage! The show will reflect both the school’s history and how it affects the students today, as it follows a young girl who, by learning the true story of her school’s past, is empowered to make changes in her present.

Directed by Andrew Binger​, all performances will take place at Hedgepeth-Williams Middle School of the Arts (301 Gladstone Avenue in Trenton). This show is appropriate for ages 10 and up. Please note, all performances of Janet Wide Awake will follow the COVID Policy instituted in Trenton Public Schools. As a larger venue, Hedgepeth-Williams Middle School for the Arts accommodates socially distanced seating. Socially distanced seating is available upon request at the performance.​

All TFYA performances are followed by a talkback with the artists where audience members can ask questions. These talkbacks are moderated by a nonprofit professional from the community who has in-depth knowledge regarding the topic addressed in the production.

Upcoming Hedgepeth-Williams Performances

Friday, April 1 @ 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 2 @ 3 p.m.
Sunday, April 3 @ 3 p.m.

$25 Adults
$15 Mercer County Educators
$5 Students/ Hedgepeth-Williams Families
Free for Trenton Public School Students at the door!

Purchase tickets here: https://www.passagetheatre.org/janet-wide-awake

About Author