The Salem Witch Trials are an infamous part of early American history. They are characterized by mass paranoia and flippant accusation of witchcraft. Lori Prescott Hansen, writer, mother and actress, had a less intimate interest in the history of Salem until her son made a significant genealogical discovery—she is related to an accused witch.
Ann Foster, Hansen’s 11th great-grandmother, was accused and convicted of witchcraft in 1692 during the Salem Witch Trials. Using a grant from the Idaho Commission for the Arts, Hansen went back to Salem to research Ann’s life and home city of Andover, Massachusetts. She visited Ann’s old property, the church house she would have attended and a neighboring graveyard with headstones from the same era.
Based on her findings, Hansen wrote and produced the one-woman play called “I Be a Witch,” a retelling of Ann’s experience during the Salem Witch Trials. Hansen hopes audience members will find the production both entertaining and informative.
Showings for “I Be a Witch” are this Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m. at the Romance Theater in Rexburg. Hansen anticipates having a question-and-answer session after the one-hour theater performance. Tickets for this event are available at Rexburgarts.org.