Stokes Arts Community Theatre to present ‘The Meaning of Our Tears’

The Lawson House

The Stokes County Arts Council will present “The Meaning of Our Tears”, a theatrical adaptation of the book by author Trudy J. Smith based on the Lawson Family tragedy of 1929, with performances scheduled the weekends of August 7-9, 14-16, and 21-23 at South Stokes High School, 1100 South Stokes High Drive in Walnut Cove.

“For many years, Stokes County residents have had an attraction to the mystery and circumstances surrounding the story of the Charlie Lawson family of 1929” commented Stokes Arts Director Eddy McGee. “Several suggested that we organize a play based on the two books by Trudy J. Smith, White Christmas, Bloody Christmas and The Meaning of Our Tears. After careful consideration, with the goal of offering as much sensitivity to the subject as possible, playwright Justin Hall has written a dynamic play that our organization is proud to be part of” he added.

Both books by author Trudy J. Smith were based on one of the most brutal and mysterious crimes ever recorded in U.S. history, with the setting being a rural Stokes County tobacco farm on Christmas Day of 1929, where reportedly Charlie Lawson killed his wife and six children before taking his own life.

“It is a sad part of Stokes County history, but nevertheless, a part that people still want to talk about and reflect upon. We do hope that people will attend the play before passing judgement on what they believe the performances will involve” McGee concluded.

Director Justin Bulla has been chosen to direct the production, with a diverse cast made up of Stokes and Piedmont area community actors.

Tickets are already on sale and can be purchased by calling the Stokes County Arts Council at 336 593-8159. Performance times are 7pm for all scheduled Friday and Saturday shows and 3pm for Sunday shows. Stokes Arts has designated a portion of the proceeds from the performances in support of Stokes County domestic violence advocacy and renovations to the South Stokes High School auditorium.

The Lawson House Lawson House
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