Actors playing Harry Ford and Harry Hawk wear 1860s costumes including top hats. They stand in front of the Ford’s Theatre Presidential Box.
Photo of Jonathan Atkinson and Joe Mallon by Carolina Dulcey. Background photo by Gary Erskine.

One Destiny

A one-act play about the Lincoln assassination at Ford’s Theatre.

40 minutes with no intermission.
Recommended for ages 8 and older.

Performances resume March 26, 2024 through May 18, 2024. Check back on this page for tickets in the months to come.

Learn about President Lincoln’s assassination from two men who were there. Actor Harry Hawk and Ford’s Theatre co-owner Harry Ford revisit the events of April 14, 1865. As they reconstruct the sequence of events, they grapple with the question: Could John Wilkes Booth have been stopped?

This 40-minute performance explores the key facts of the assassination while capturing the emotions of that fateful night. The production also has been featured in local schools and at the White House. Our 2023 cast will feature Jonathan Atkinson and Joe Mallon. Click below to view our Historic Site Visit page and reserve a time to tour Ford’s Theatre and see One Destiny!

In-person performances of One Destiny are offered Tuesdays through Saturdays as part of select morning historic site visit entries beginning March 26, 2024. Check the calendar for the most updated times. The current schedule is: 

Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays:  

Historic Site Visit Entry: 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. 

Performances: 10:30 and 11:30 a.m.  

Fridays and Saturdays:  

Historic Site Visit Entry: 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.  

Performances: 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m.  

On Demand recorded performance now available

Ford’s Theatre presents One Destiny: On Demand, available to stream from your home or your classroom, now through May 2024. Learn more about how to reserve tickets to view the recorded version of this Ford’s Theatre tradition, featuring Michael Bunce and Stephen F. Schmidt.


Richard Hellesen


Mark Ramont

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Watch the Trailer

From The Gallery

Sensory-Friendly Pre-Visit Materials

At Ford’s Theatre, we are committed to ensuring visitors of all abilities can experience the performances, exhibits, history and programs our site has to offer. We invite you to explore these materials to prepare for your visit.


“I'm very happy that Ford's Theatre is continuing their annual tradition of presenting One Destiny. Whether you are a local or a tourist coming to DC, put this show on your bucket list.”
– Broadway World
"Again @fordstheatre does an incredible respectful awaking of history. Highly recommend you include One Destiny in your DCtrip #FordsDestiny"
– Twitter User @DarrenMilligan
"Powerful performance, definitely recommend this experience as an introduction to visiting @fordstheatre #FordsDestiny"
– @bluelikechagall
"Even more than the museum, we enjoyed a one act play, 'One Destiny,' where actors who portrayed the co-owner of the theater and an actor of the theater at the time, discuss whether they could have changed the course of history. It was an interesting view of events surrounding the assassination of A
– Fae G., TripAdvisor
"One Destiny has levity but it also beautifully captures the pain that Booth caused so many, outside of just Lincoln. #FordsDestiny"
– Twitter User @beccagrawl