Benjamin Gilmer •

Wed, Sep 21 – 7:00 pm est

Benjamin Gilmer

Dr. Benjamin Gilmer is a family physician and Associate Professor at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine and Mountain Area Health Education Center’s (MAHEC) Family Medicine Residency Program.  As the Medical Director for MAHEC’s Rural Health Initiative and Rural Fellowship, he is passionate about advocating for global and rural health disparities. His advocacy work currently focuses on bringing media attention to the social injustice of mass incarceration.

His book, The Other Dr. Gilmer (Ballantine/Penguin Random House) and feature film project (Concordia Films) both highlight the injustice of mass incarceration of people with mental illness. Both projects are based on a 2013 This American Life podcast (Dr. Gilmer and Mr. Hyde), a collaboration between Benjamin and Sarah Koenig (“Serial”) which has had more than 10 million listeners. He lives with his wife, Deirdre, two children, Kai and Luya, and their dog Prince Peanut Butter in Asheville, North Carolina.

Event and Book

In-person tickets for this event can be reserved through the City Opera House. Livestream tickets for this event can be purchased through our site. 

Based on one of the most popular This American Life stories of all time, The Other Dr. Gilmer is a powerful true story about a shocking crime and a mysterious illness that will forever change your notions of how we punish and how we heal. Soon to become a feature film, the book is equal parts true crime, medical mystery, heartbreaking saga of intergenerational abuse and a look at how a disease ravaged a family.

Fresh out of medical residency, Dr. Benjamin Gilmer joined a rural North Carolina clinic only to find that its previous doctor shared his last name. Dr. Vince Gilmer was loved and respected by the community— right up until he strangled his ailing father and then returned to the clinic for a regular week of work. Vince’s eventual arrest for murder shocked his patients.

How could their beloved doctor be capable of such violence? The deeper Benjamin looked into Vince’s case, the more he became obsessed with discovering what had pushed a good man toward darkness.

Fans of true-crime podcasts, medical mysteries, and compelling personal narratives will all want to be on hand when Dr. Gilmer takes the stage at the City Opera House on September 21st!


In-Person Tickets: $5 for students, $15-$25 for adults. Tickets can be purchased through the City Opera House site or through the Box Office. Fees apply for online and phone purchases.

Livestream Tickets: $12.50 per household.

Guest Host | April Baer

April Baer is the host of Michigan Radio’s Stateside talk show. Prior to her arrival in Michigan, April was the host of the weekly show State of Wonder on Oregon Public Broadcasting (OPB) for the past six years. Before that, she was the Morning Edition host and a reporter at OPB, covering beats including government and legal affairs, changing demographics, and the arts. April has been the recipient of a number of awards including the 2006 New York Festivals – Bronze Medal for podcast; The Ohio Society of Professional Journalists Best Social Justice Reporting Award; and a Finalist in the 2007 Public Radio Talent Quest, a nationwide competition to select new public radio hosts and shows.

Local Bookstores

Bay Books – Suttons Bay

Brilliant Books – Traverse City

Cottage Book Shop – Glen Arbor

Horizon Books – Traverse City

McLean & Eakin – Petoskey

Saturn Booksellers – Gaylord

Literary Sponsor

Bay Books

Event Underwriter

Robert & Anne Tucker


Development Sponsor

Season Sponsor

Arts Benefactor


This activity is supported in part by the MICHIGAN ARTS & CULTURE COUNCIL and the NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR THE ARTS.

Raising Writers Grantor

Supporting Partners

Major Media Sponsor

Supporting Media Sponsors

Supporting Sponsors