AFD Theatre logoUPDATED March 17: Arlington Friends of the Drama completed its production of,  the Massachusetts premiere of "Court-Martial at Fort Devens," playing at the AFD's theater, 22 Academy St., March 1 through 17 . Fort Devens promotional poster

Written by Boston-born playwright Jeffrey Sweet, this is based on a true story about four African American women at Fort Devens, Mass., during World War II, who went on strike seeking the skilled jobs that they had been promised training for instead of the maid work that they were assigned. 

Performances began March 1. The final weekend is March 15, 16 and 17. The Friday and Saturday performances are scheduled for 8 p.m.; Sunday shows are at 3 p.m. Tickets, at $25 per person, can be purchased here >>

The production is directed by Lisa Miller-Gillespie. More information about this show and the AFD are below: 

According to a press release from Webb, this story documents the strike of Black women who joined the Women’s Army Corps, championed by then-First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt. Many of those stationed at Fort Devens were promised training to become medical technicians and nurses -- but were ultimately reassigned by a colonel to cleaning toilets, mopping floors and doing laundry. 'Court-Martial at Fort Devens' cast

"Court-Martial at Fort Devens" premiered in Chicago, where it was nominated for the Joseph Jefferson Award for best play. Sweet has written dozens of plays, which have appeared in New York and on stages around the country and the world. His prizes include two playwriting awards from the American Theatre Critics Association. He serves on the Council of the Dramatists Guild.

465 CREW Miller Gillespie LisaLisa Miller-Gillespie Cast members include Trisha Barngi, Victoria Lee, June Dever, Sally Jean-Baptiste, Michelle Mount, Angela Courtney Rossi, Paul Benford-Bruce, Jon Nuquist, David Dooks, Andrew Quinny and Claude Del.

In a recent email to YourArlington, AFD Publicity Director Ginger Webb wrote that Sweet planned to attend the March 9 peformance. After the show, Sweet was expected to stay and speak with the audience at a wine-and-cheese reception to finish the night.

Arlington Friends of the Drama is one of the country’s oldest continually running community theaters, now in its 101st season. The box office can be reached at 781-646-5922 or via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Feb. 25, 2024: AFD meets challenges involving dramas calling for Black actors

This news announcement was published Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024, based on an email from Arlington Friends of the Drama. It was updated March 5, to state that the playwright is expected to attend the March 9 show, and March 17, for date references.