With Hannibal an ever-growing threat to Rome in the ongoing Second Punic War, and Rome quickly approaching its devastating defeat at the Battle of Cannae, Opimia – a young, vow-breaking Vestal Virgin – becomes convinced that her illegally-conceived child will someday save Rome, just as another disgraced Vestal’s offspring once founded it. As the situation in Rome worsens, and the Republic’s religious authorities look for someone to blame, Opimia faces the ever-more-likely danger of a Vestal’s traditional punishment for unchastity: being buried alive. A new play by Princeton senior Lydia Gompper ’22, who is also costume designer, and directed by junior Eliyana Abraham ’23. Part of the Program in Theater’s New Works Festival, produced by Shariffa Ali.

Content warnings: Discussions of sexual assault, violence against women, pregnancy/abortion, suicide, death, and war.

Tickets and Details

The performances are free and open to Princeton students, faculty and staff. Reserve free tickets through University Ticketing; first log-in with Princeton netID to the ticketing website, then browse the event listings for these performances.

Get directions to the Wallace Theater and find other venue information for the arts complex.

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COVID-19 Guidance + Updates

Per Princeton University policy, all guests are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to the maximum extent, which now includes a COVID booster shot for all eligible to receive it, and to wear a mask when indoors. Please note that actors will be unmasked while performing onstage.


The event space is wheelchair accessible. Visit our Venues and Studios section for accessibility information at our various locations. Guests in need of access accommodations are invited to contact the Lewis Center at 609-258-5262 or email at least one week in advance of the event date.