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Votes for Women Exceeds the Stage

Votes for Women Exceeds the Stage

Friday, March 17, 2017

JaiCe Stinton ’18

Performed from March 2-4, Siena College's “Votes for Women,” provided audience members an immersive promenade performance that brought community members and students together to experience the women’s suffrage movement. Siena students and faculty worked side by side to deliver a greater understanding and appreciation for those women who challenged New York State and federal governments.

Director and writer, Dr. Krysta Dennis, said that this idea was sparked last January and since then, she has been developing the storyline and casting for the roles. Dennis decided to embrace an immersive format for the play because of the complexity of the plot. Spanning over 80 years, the play incorporated so many key moments that a normal theatre format could not contain it.

Humanities NY awarded Siena College a $3,800 Action Grant for the production of Votes for Women. This allowed for the play to be free of charge for anyone interested. Action grants are given to projects that promote reflection of values and encourage critical thinking about cultural changes.

Those in attendance walked through the lives of several iconic members of the women’s rights movement, such as Alice Pope and Elizabeth Cady Stanton. This production brought the audience through several pivotal moments in history, highlighting rallies, imprisonment and, finally, the celebration of women’s rights.

Dennis believes “it is incredibly important to engage with the stories of the many women who gave so much so that other women would have representation in their own government.”

The play was also performed at Albany’s Ten Broeck Mansion on March 10 and 11.

“This play reminded me of the struggle women went through to get to where they are today and we need to continue to fight and support our rights,” said accounting major Chelsea Sheldon ’18.