Mrs. Hawking, part 6
Written by Phoebe Roberts & Bernie Gabin

Arisia, Jan 14, 2024
5pm, Grand Ballroom

Photo by Dan Fox

Our Story So Far
Scene Breakdown
The Cast
The Crew
Who’s Who
Behind the Scenes

Our Story So Far…

London, 1888 – the 51st year of QUEEN VICTORIA’s reign; HORROR IN WHITECHAPEL headlines the newspapers

A 90-second video version of this synopsis is also available.

Having begun to overcome the anger and mistrust from her unwilling marriage to the late Col. Hawking, MRS. HAWKING is starting to rely more heavily on her nephew NATHANIEL in their vigilante work. But his kidnapping last year by MRS. HAWKING’s childhood governess and mentor – turned greatest rival – MRS. FROST has left NATHANIEL with emotional scars that he is only beginning to understand. 

MRS. HAWKING fared little better. Forced to commit MRS. FROST to an asylum to keep her from accessing her criminal empire, and losing her dearest friend, MALAIKA, in the process, MRS. HAWKING struggles under the weight of the decisions she has made.

MRS. HAWKING’s friendship with her maid, MARY, offers no consolation. Their relationship became strained since MRS. HAWKING discovered that MARY has secretly been courted by ARTHUR SWANN of the City of London Police.

But there is little time to wrestle with their inner demons, as a new evil has risen to prey upon London’s most vulnerable. Four women are already dead, and the lives of many more balance on the edge of a knife as Team Hawking must leap into action to hunt the infamous murderer … JACK THE RIPPER.


Whitechapel prop map used in Fallen Women

Act 1
Scene 1 – the streets of Whitechapel, the morning of Nov 5, 1888 
Scene 2 – Hawking study, later that day
Scene 3 – a small room in a genteel asylum, later that day
Scene 4 – the streets of Whitechapel, that evening
Scene 5 – Hawking parlor, Nov 7
Scene 6 – a small room in a genteel asylum, Nov 8
Scene 7 – Hawking parlor, Nov 10

Act 2
Scene 1 – a private chamber in Buckingham Palace, Nov 11
Scene 2 – a small room in a genteel asylum, Nov 12
Scene 3 – meanwhile, on the streets of Whitechapel
Scene 4 – a small room in a genteel asylum, later that night
Scene 5 – a warehouse in East London, late that night/early the next morning
Scene 6 – Hawking parlor, early morning Nov 13
Scene 7 – a Catholic church, late Dec

The Cast…

Photo by Dan Fox

MRS. VICTORIA HAWKING, lady’s society avenger ……… Cari Keebaugh
MISS MARY STONE, her housemaid and assistant ……… Coryn May
MR. NATHANIEL HAWKING, her gentleman nephew ……… Christian Krenek
SGT. ARTHUR SWANN, Mary’s policeman beau ……… Matt Kamm
MRS. CLARA HAWKING, Nathaniel’s society wife ……… Jackie Freyman
MRS. ELIZABETH FROST, a criminal mastermind, now institutionalized ……… Arielle Kaplan
MISS MARY JANE KELLY, a London prostitute ……… Sara Dion
MISS VIOLET STRALLAN, a London nurse ……… Robin Abrahams
MR. ROLAND DAVIES, once Mrs. Frost’s man ……… Andrew Prentice
A DISTINGUISHED MATRON, in widow’s weeds ……… Jenn Benfield
THE RIPPER, the Whitechapel murderer ……… Pieter Wallace
MISS MALAIKA SHAH, a specter of the past ……… Naomi Ibasitas
Townspeople, ruffians, orderlies, non-speaking ensemble ……… Kate Potter, Jason Tilton

The Crew…

Still from Set Build Time-lapse by Bernie Gabin

Director ……… Phoebe Roberts
Technical Director ……… Bernie Gabin
Stage Manager ……… Naomi Ibasitas
Assistant Stage Manager ……… Kathy Bedard
Fight Choreographer ……… Dan Prior
Fight Captain ……… Andrew Prentice
Costumer ……… Jenn Benfield
Costume Assistant ……… Kate Potter
Set Design ……… Carolyn Daitch
Crew ……… Michael McAfee, Keisha Warriner, Mazz Mazzacano
Sound Design ……… Neil Marsh
Sound Tech ……… The Wicked, Wicked Sound Boys (Jason Kuehl & Jacob LaRocca)

Asylum music box theme composed by Michael J. Veloso

There will be no intermission. Show runs approx. 95 min.
CONTENT NOTES: gunshot sound effect, mention of spousal violence, violence against sex workers

Who’s Who…

Photo by Dan Fox

Robin Abrahams (Violet Strallan) is delighted to be joining Team Hawking for 2024! Previous roles include Fabian in “12th Night” and Jaques in “As You Like It” (Dream Role Players); Marjory in “The Moors” (Entropy Theatre); Vera Martin in “She Kills Monsters” (Theatre@First); Mrs. Higgins in “Pygmalion” (Theatre to Go); and Mrs. Ill in “The Visit” (Apollinaire). She previously played Drs. Gall and Adler (“R.U.R.” and “Web of Murder,” Theatre@First) and will be playing Dr. Pinch in Quannapowitt Players’ “Comedy of Errors” in the spring, so playing a nurse is a nice change of pace. Offstage, Robin is best known as Miss Conduct, advice columnist in the Boston Globe Sunday magazine.

Sara Dion is so excited to be reprising the role of Mary Jane Kelly. As Sara is mostly a comedic actress, this role is inspiring and challenging for her, and she is happy to be able to bring the character back. She lives in Somerville with her beautiful black cat, Snuggle. She is grateful to Snuggle for always getting her through the day. Career-wise, she works as a trainer for the Department of Public Health, and also designs puzzles and runs games at Boxaroo Escape Room. She recently appeared as “The Director” in “The King in Yellow” with the Post-Meridian Radio Players and as an Ensemble member in “Avenue Q” with Dramatically Incorrect Theatre Group. Next up for Sara is “The Comedy of Errors” with Quannapowitt Players, where she will be playing Dromio of Ephesus. You can follow her on Instagram @UnbreakableSara and TikTok @Sara_n_snuggle for cat antics, comedy skits, song covers, book reviews, bath bomb demos, ASMR, and more.

Jackie Freyman (Clara Hawking) is thrilled to be coming back to live performance and reprising her role as Clara Hawking (the other Mrs. Hawking) in the Mrs. Hawking series. Other favorite roles include Lottie Wilton in Enchanted April (Theatre To Go), Suzanne in The Scarlet Pimpernel (Post Meridian Radio Players), Tinker Bell in Peter Pan (Post Meridian Radio Players), and the ghost of Mrs. Ball in Mother Goose’s Grave (Theatre@First’s Festival@First: Wicked Boston).
Jackie has been performing since the age of six and studied acting, writing, and directing at Emerson College. She became a produced playwright in 2022 and hopes to reprise that role, as well (fingers crossed!). Thanks to the friends and family who have supported her over the years, and the biggest thanks to Phoebe for letting her play in this wild Victorian sandbox!

Naomi Ibasitas (Malaika, Stage Manager) is an actor, stage manager, and director within the Boston fringe theatre community.  She has been playing the role of Malaika since the debut of part 4, Mrs. Hawking: Gilded Cages. Since then, she has endeavored to be involved as much as she can in the Hawking Universe including stage management and as Rosaline Pembroke in the Hawking spin-off, Gentleman Never Tell. Naomi is so excited to see Mrs. Hawking back on the stage live this year, and please check out the Hawking films on Youtube (because they are SO GOOD)! 

Non-Hawking acting credits include Disenchanted! (Mulan/Pocahontas) with the Walpole Footlighters, the 4th Annual Asian American Playwrights Collective Festival 2021 (various roles), and 7 Rooms: The Masque of the Red Death (Misha in Toasting Man) with Flat Earth Theatre. Off the stage, she is a character performer with Spark a Dream Princess Parties! She graduated from Emerson College with a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Studies.

Matthew Kamm (Arthur Swann) is simply chuffed to be returning to Arisia and Mrs. Hawking in 2024! You may also have seen him in Mrs. Hawking parts II-V (Arthur Swann) and the digital spin-off Gentlemen Never Tell (Theo Pryce). Many thanks to Phoebe and Bernie for continuing to make the Hawking magic happen, year after year. When not acting or participating in miscellaneous geekery, Matt works to protect local wildlife as part of Zoo New England’s Field Conservation Department. During his rare and mysterious “spare time,” he enjoys birding, cooking, and spending time with his wife and daughter. 

Arielle Kaplan (Elizabeth Frost) is delighted to be returning as the Miss Moriarty to Victoria Hawking’s Sherlock. As an actor and violence designer, she has been fortunate enough to work throughout New England, notably with The Barnstormers (Big River, Witness for the Prosecution), Berkshire Theatre Festival (Babes in Arms), Advice to the Players (The Comedy of Errors, Henry V), and the Regent Theatre (Old Jews Telling Jokes)
Recently, she originated the title role in the musical Miriam and is starring as Alice inT: An MBTA Musical at The Rockwell. Arielle is an award winning cosplayer/sewist and can often be found as Princess Leia with The Rebel Legion. For more personal information, write to her mother. 

Cari Keebaugh’s (Mrs. Hawking) favorite activity is stalking the night in Victorian London as a vigilante. When she’s not performing with her Hawking family, she can often be found treading the boards with other local theater troupes; recent roles include Denise/Perkins the Butler (Quannapowitt Players’ The Play That Goes Wrong), the Fairy Godmother (Little Red Hen’s Cinderella), and the Narrator (PMRP’s forthcoming The Renegotiation).
She enjoys a good stage punch (and kick and stab), but when she’s not throwing them herself Cari loves helping other actors throw punches (and kicks and stabs): she dabbles in stage combat choreography, having designed the violence in Hamlet (Theatre@First) and Fight Girl Battle World (North Shore Community College Performing Arts). She is greatly looking forward to working with T@F as their violence and intimacy choreographer on their upcoming show, Marian, Or the True Tale of Robin Hood.
Cari does occasionally perform in roles that don’t require any punching at all: she works as a character entertainer on the North Shore, specializing in roles like Tinkerbell and Rapunzel. She lives on the North Shore with her own Prince Charming, and she is a big fan of tea and glitter. You can follow her adventures on her website,

Christian Krenek (Nathaniel Hawking) is thrilled to be back onstage with his favorite nineteenth century family! By day, Christian works for SpeakEasy Stage Company by finding memes; by night, he goes to escape rooms, does puzzles, gets murdered, flirts awkwardly with men (“Want to hear some fun facts about Queen Victoria?”), and hunts for kittens to cuddle. So much love to everyone in the cast and crew, and especially to Phoebe for letting him bring his favorite role ever to life for all these years. Break a leg (and a teacup)! (He/Him/His)

Neil Marsh (Sound Design) is delighted to be back behind the laptop again for the first time in 4 years. He is one of the co-founders, and a former Artistic Director, of the Post-Meridian Radio Players. 
Designing a sound- and music-scape to match the eeriness and emotional intensity of this play was a real challenge. Neil hopes you find it a compelling part of the production.

Michael McAfee (Stage Crew) has been active in Boston area fandom since the early 1990s.  Along with helping out the Mrs. Hawking plays, he has served a variety of roles in the Post Meridian Radio Players, most recently co-writing their adaptation of “Metropolis” which played in the Spring of 2023. He also appears regularly at various poetry open mics.

Phoebe Roberts (Playwright, Director) is a writer and theater artist from the Boston area who is one half of the creator team behind Mrs. Hawking, in seven installments currently being produced by Breaking Light Productions. Her other work includes the comedy series Dream Machine and Texts from Avengers Tower. By day she teaches writing and English at Lesley University. 

Pieter Wallace (The Ripper/Assistant Stage Manager) has been working with Breaking Light Productions and other theater companies in the Greater Boston area as an actor and crew member for the past six years. He’s delighted to reprise his role as the Ripper, and for the chance to duel his dear friend, Cari Keebaugh, on the stage again! He has also performed as Peter Morgan in Gentlemen Never Tell, Jonathan Harker in Dracula, the Romulan Commander in PMRP’s Gender-swapped Star Trek: The Enterprise Incident, and several of Mrs. Hawking’s punching bags in previous entries in the series.

By day, Pieter is an RN and personal trainer. When between productions, he spends his free time writing and running TTRPGs, illustrating characters, and being the eternal straight man to his players’ puns.

Behind the Scenes…

Enjoy peeking behind the curtain? Take a look at some special behind-the-scenes footage with the cast and crew of Team Hawking!
Historical Tidbits
Stage Combat
How We Get Ready for a Performance Weekend
Bloopers & Outtakes
How to Make Victorian Scones
Tasting Jack the Ripper-inspired tea blends (with special thanks to The Raven and Reverie Shoppe!)