Don Baiocchi as Raymond Gosling, Lindsey Dorcus as Rosalind Franklin

Robert Kaercher as Maurice Wilkins, Lindsey Dorcus as Rosalind Franklin

Andrew Lund as James Watson, Conor Burke as Francis Crick

Freddie Beckley as Donald Caspar, Lindsey Dorcus as Rosalind Franklin

Don Baiocchi as Raymond Gosling, Lindsey Dorcus as Rosalind Franklin

Photos by Ashley Woods


Elizabeth Lovelady turns the tiny Lincoln Square church basement into an asset. Eschewing scenery, two plain wooden work tables, several lab stools, a coatrack and some props allow the action to flow smoothly from King’s College to Crick and Watson’s Lab and anywhere else the characters go. She and her actors transport the audience back to the 1950’s, both in action and manner...

While the play can sometimes become didactic, Lovelady’s production never does. The actors have gone out of their way to portray their characters the way they probably were at the dawn of the new world of genetics, and Lindsey Dorcus as Rosalind Franklin, shows how she was able to live her life and her work without compromise in a time when few women, including her, were given the option of doing so.
— Chicago Stage Standard
The 20% Theatre Company’s production of the play, directed by Elizabeth Lovelady, took place in a church basement with seating for 28 audience members. Despite the modest surroundings, the actors brought the play to vivid life, capturing the personalities and relationships of Franklin and her three male colleagues who won the Nobel Prize for the double helix discovery.
— Michael and Mona Heath Fund
Director Elizabeth Lovelady’s agile staging for 20% Theatre Company is sure-footed enough to more than compensate for the rudimentary production values, and the wholly engaging cast make potentially bookish material vibrant and heartfelt.
— Chicago Reader

Director’s Note

As a member of the generation that came of age when Dolly the sheep was cloned, it’s hard for me to imagine that less 50 years before, DNA replication was just a theory. And it was a theory they were nowhere close to proving. However, as Rosalind Franklin points out in the opening words of our play, science is the art of making the invisible visible. And so they continued, against all hope.

With the help of Rosalind Franklin’s Photo 51, Watson and Crick were eventually able to develop a chemical model of DNA and determine how it replicates. Although Franklin’s life was cut short, and her contributions to science gravely overlooked, and although she never received due credit in her lifetime, the results of Franklin’s research will continue to make an impact long after we are gone.

I feel a kinship with Rosalind, and not only because my chosen career has only recently become a possibility for a woman. We as theater artists also are charged with making the invisible visible. And although our creation only exists as long as you are in the room with us, we hope these stories will make an impact on you that lasts a lifetime.


Rosalind Franklin: Lindsey Dorcus
Raymond Gosling: Don Baiocchi
Donald Caspar: Freddie Beckley
Francis Crick: Conor Burke
Maurice Wilkins: Robert Kaercher
James Watson: Andrew Lund

Production Team

Director: Elizabeth Lovelady
Stage Manager: Roxie Kooi

Dramaturge: Jessica Swim

Scenic Designer: Elyse Balogh

Costume Designer: Asha McAllister

Lighting Designer: Rebecca Bartle
Sound Designer: Kallie Rolison

Props Designer: Holly McCauley

Select Design Images

Set drawing.JPG
Set by Elyse Balogh

Set by Elyse Balogh

Props by Holly McCauley

Props by Holly McCauley

Costumes by Asha McAllister

Costumes by Asha McAllister