New Play: Hope I Die Before I Get Old

Posted June 26, 2023

Categories: Articles, Events, Featured, Plays

The Last Case of Sherlock Holmes

Tickets now available here.

Read about the show in the Daily Hampshire Gazette!

And here in The Reminder!

“Saw this very funny and engaging play last night and really enjoyed it. The playwright and performer, John Feffer,, has melded history, humor, and some interesting elements — video, audience interaction, taped voices — to fine effect. Highly recommend.” — Steve Pfarrer, arts reporter, Daily Hampshire Gazette via Twitter.

The world premiere of Hope I Die Before I Get Old: The Last Case of Sherlock Holmes will take place at the Blue Room in Easthampton’s CitySpace on Friday, July 21. It will run for six performances at 8 pm (July 21, 22, 23 (3 pm matinee), 27, 28, 29).

Hope I Die Before I Get Old finds Sherlock Holmes in Moscow to investigate the puzzling death in April 1930 of the poet Vladimir Mayakovsky. The bard of the Russian revolution has just shot himself through the heart. It’s not a question of whodunnit, but why? Although the Soviet authorities are counting on Holmes to answer that question, only Mayakovsky himself can really solve the mystery. Resurrected and forced to relive his life backwards, the poet delves into his past—aided by two mysterious women—to figure out why he ultimately pulled the trigger.

Written and performed by John Feffer, Hope I Die Before I Get Old juxtaposes the famous detective and infamous poet in a historical thriller that probes the mysteries of creativity and political collaboration. At a time when so many eyes are focused on Russia and its war in Ukraine, this new one-man show captures the dilemmas facing Russian artists today. The show also features Jarice Hanson and Hero Marguerite in video cameos. It’s directed by Chris Rohmann and stage-managed by Nikki Beck.

John Feffer (Holmes, Mayakovsky) is the playwright, performer, and producer of 11 previous theater works. His shows have appeared at the Edinburgh, NYC, and Capitol Fringes and the One Man Standing and United Solo festivals. Hailed as a “brilliant writer and performer” by the Washington City Paper, he received a solo performance award in 2016 from the Maryland State Arts Council. His publications include four acclaimed novels, half a dozen non-fiction books, and numerous articles. He directs a foreign policy thinktank and recently relocated to Northampton.

Chris Rohmann (director) has directed numerous shows in the region, for Silverthorne Theater Company, Majestic Theater and Suffield Players, among others. He recently retired his long-running Stagestruck column in the Valley Advocate.

Nikki Beck (stage manager) is the production manager for the Smith College Department of Theatre and the vice president of CitySpace in Easthampton.

Jarice Hanson (Yelena) is professor emerita from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where she was a member of the Department of Communication. She has worked extensively in theatre, most recently in A Walk in the Woods for New Century Theatre in Easthampton, Mass., and both The Glass Menagerie and August Osage County at The Provincetown Theater in Provincetown, Mass. She is now touring with her one-woman show Frances Perkins: A Woman’s Work.

Hero Marguerite (Lily) is a recent graduate of Smith College Theater. Recent acting credits include Twelfth Night at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts, RE/Emergence with the RE/Emergence Collective, and Sweeney Todd with Pan Opera. Upcoming projects include Chester Theatre Company’s production of Circle Mirror Transformation this summer.

More information, comps, pics, and interviews: John Feffer (; 202-294-9128

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