In 1991, seven black and five white jurors convicted Troy Davis of murder in the shooting death of Savannah police officer Mark MacPhail. Davis sat on Georgia’s deathrow for 20 years. Leading up to his execution, there were mass protests. Some of Davis’ supporters included Pope Benedict XVI, former U.S. President Jimmy Carter, and former Republican Congressman Bob Barr of Georiga. Their efforts to stop the execution weren’t successful. On September 21, 2011, the state of Georgia executed Troy Davis. Atlanta-based playwright Lee Nowell was captivated by the case. She was commissioned by Atlanta’s Synchronicity Theatre to write a play based on Troy Davis’ story. It premiered at Synchronicity in 2016, and was called "Beyond Reasonable Doubt: The Troy Davis Project.” Each act of the play may lead you to a different conclusion about Troy Davis’ innocence or guilt. Lee Nowell adapted the play for GPB as a podcast and radio broadcast, featuring all the original actors. Lee blends fictional characters with research and court transcripts.
The Alison and Bob Act
In this act of the play, we meet a married couple living in Atlanta. Their relationship is tested when they reveal very different opinions about Troy Davis' guilt or innocence.
The Curtis and Mary Act
In this act of the play, we meet Curtis, a freshman at Morehouse College in Atlanta. He clashes with his grandmother Mary about Troy Davis' fate on death row. Curtis is forced to do some major soul searching as he makes up his mind about Troy Davis' innocence or guilt.
When a life hangs in the balance, what does beyond a reasonable doubt really mean? In 2011, the state of Georgia executed Troy Davis for the killing of Savannah policeman Mark MacPhail. The case drew international attention.
On Oct. 21, 2018, GPB presents: "Beyond Reasonable Doubt: The Troy Davis Project." This work by Atlanta playwright Lee Nowell explores the powerful convictions and doubts on both sides of the case.