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Voter Registration and Talkbacks Will Accompany Production Of SUSAN B. at Theater for the New City

Performances run October 12 to 16.

Voter Registration and Talkbacks Will Accompany Production Of SUSAN B. at Theater for the New City

Theater for the New City (TNC), 155 First Ave., will present "Susan B." by Toby Armour, a bioplay on suffragist Susan B. Anthony directed by Joan Kane, October 12 to 16. In conjunction with the play, League of Women Voters of New York will conduct voter registration in the theater lobby (each performance) and talkbacks on the midterm elections featuring representatives of the League (Friday at 8:00 PM and Saturday at 8:00 PM).

The "time for this play" is now. We are living in a time of deliberate campaigns of voter suppression through a variety of means. Coincidentally, or maybe not so coincidentally, we're living in a time when women's rights are increasingly under attack. All of which makes it seem obligatory to revisit the life struggles of historic female activists and be inspired by their brave campaigns for fundamental rights.

In the play, Susan B. Anthony recounts her life struggles and political maturation in the context of a press interview with Nellie Bly, the famed reporter for the Pittsburgh Dispatch and New York World who was a pioneer of investigative journalism. There are occasional appearances by Elizabeth Cady Stanton, whom Susan B. regarded as her teacher, inspiration and philosopher. Stanton regarded Anthony as her General who planned, organized and turned ideas into action. A chorus of actors play convention delegates, townspeople, voices of derision, New York State legislators and others who provide context for Ms. Anthony's remembrances. Much of the dialogue is in Susan B. Anthony's own words.

The play was developed at TNC under the direction of the late George Ferencz between 2014 and 2020. Part of it was presented by TNC as a radio play to celebrate Women's History Month from March 28 to to April 11, 2021. A two-part version, titled "Aunt Susan and Her Tennessee Waltz," was presented by TNC April 28 to May 15, 2022. That production's second part dramatized the efforts of Carrie Chapman Catt, Juno Frankie Pearce and others to achieve ratification of the 19th Amendment in Nashville in 1920. "Susan B." is part one of this production. Kathleen Moore, who starred as Susan B. Anthony last Spring, will reprise her role.

The League of Women Voters (LWV) is a nonpartisan organization. Speakers will include Diane Burrows, Co-President of LWV of NYC, along with Ketaki Gujar and Karen Wharton (Friday 8:00 PM) and Renuka Balakrishnan and Sherletta McCaskill (Saturday 8:00 PM). Subjects of the post-play discussions will include what to expect at the polls and answers to frequently asked questions like "What happens if I make a mistake on my ballot?" and "What if my name is not in the poll book?" The four ballot proposals--an environmental bond issue and three amendments to the New York City Charter regarding racial justice--will be explained in depth. Election Day is November 8 and early voting begins October 29.

In the effort to attract new voters, admission to the play is free to anyone with a college or university ID. Performances of "Susan B." are October 12-16, Wednesday through Saturday at 8:00 PM and Saturday and Sunday at 3:00 PM. The play's running time is one hour; talkbacks are 30 minutes. To buy tickets, go to https://cloud.broadwayworld.com/rec/ticketclick.cfm?fromlink=2200831®id=2&articlelink=https%3A%2F%2Ftheaterforthenewcity.net%2Fshows%2Fsusan-b%2F?utm_source=BWW2022&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=article&utm_content=bottombuybutton1. For info, call 212/254-1109. Theater for the New City is located at 155 First Ave., at E. 10th Street (East Village).


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