What People Are Saying

“Language is a tremendous gift, but language does not deliver experience, it only describes experience. It mediates between us and reality. And while music and performance cannot be equated with the actual experience of prison or arrest, it avoids the symbolic. It creates experience. What they managed to do was create an experience that brought the listener directly to the horror of what they wanted us to know. From where I sat, this was absolutely ingenious.” — Russel Gabriel, Clinical Professor & Criminal Defense Practicum Director, University of Georgia School of Law

“The inspiration to start The Innocents had to come from a deep and profound love for mankind, which is so gratifying. I hope more young people can get to see them and are able to find a reason to fight for a worthy cause as both John Lane and Allen Otte are doing.” — Dr. Lester Shaw, Founder/Executive Director of A Pocket Full of Hope, Inc, Music Instructor at Booker T. Washington High School, Tulsa, Oklahoma

“I regularly listen to and am moved by stories of wrongful conviction, but it was not until The Innocents performance that I really felt what it must be like to be convicted of and imprisoned for a crime I did not commit. This gripping abstract performance takes you deep into the dark world of a wrongfully convicted prisoner and is one of the most moving performances I have ever witnessed — who knew banging rocks together and tearing up sheets of paper could be so powerful! I didn’t know what to expect ahead of the performance, and I certainly didn’t expect to be moved to tears. You will be spellbound.” — Clare Gilbert, Executive Director, Georgia Innocence Project

“What a magnificent project. You managed to be a chronicler of injustice, a reporter and an ally. I never felt like you were a tourist of some else’s pain and suffering, but rather a celebrant of survival and freedom and the individual escape from tyranny. The hopeful triumph of the wrongly convicted is truly awe inspiring.” — Dr. Michael Barnhart, composer and Associate Professor of Music and Media, Shawnee State University