PWTF 2020: Untold Voices in Voting
The Philadelphia Women’s Theatre Celebrates 100 Years of the 19th Amendment with
the 6th annual festival reading series
July 30 - August 2, 2015
PWTF 2021 took place entirely over Zoom, due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Click here to view the 2020 Festival program
by Teresa Miller
I Woke Up This Morning With My Mind is about the hours leading up the night Fannie Lou Hamer spent in jail after her bus trip to from Mississippi teaching at a voter registration class.
by Alice Eve Cohen
Victoria Woodhull, the first woman to run for president, is arrested and jailed right before the election of 1872. On the eve of the 2016 election, Hillary Clinton is having a hard time sleeping. Her mind is racing. Insomnia rules. She wakes up in the Ludlow Street Jail in NYC, sharing a cell with Victoria Woodhull. Almost erased from the history books, Victoria was a clairvoyant, free-thinker, radical activist, stockbroker, and suffrage fighter. Will Hillary be radicalized by Victoria’s foresight and revolutionary politics? Mrs. Satan & the Nasty Woman examines two women’s roles in the long path to a woman President.
by Julie Zaffarano
Celebration Bread is the story of a mother (Felicia) and her daughter (Mag) who do not see eye to eye politically. The conflict comes to a head as Mag prepares to leave for college, which is also the one hundredth anniversary of the 19th suffrage amendment. A reminder from their ancestors helps them see the bigger picture.
The fight for women’s right to vote is one of the most misrepresented, misunderstood American civil rights movements. The little commonly known about it is skewed toward a few elite white women. This play follows the movement through its untold stories of race relations and conflicts, highlighting contributions from and barriers faced by suffragists of color (present yet invisible in the white mainstream, and simultaneously running their own, separate movement), spanning its official 72 years and beyond.
by Ang Bey
Run. Don't walk. Who decides how we pursue our legacy? Who decides how we fight for liberation? Who draws the line? A hood-angel Zoom-bombs Hudda's final moments. They are both in crisis. They argue over what it means to live and die in a world that'd rather you be erased. Hudda won't live to be erased.
by Nikki Brake-Sillá
In Defense of Ourselves occurs across three crucial time periods for Black America. Mary Church Terrell and Ida B. Wells-Barnett prepare for the Women's Suffrage March of 1913. In 1954, Mary and her grandson protest segregated eating establishments in Washington, DC., one year before Emmet Till's lynching and eleven years before the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The play concludes on November 9, 2016, when a conversation between two women leads to clarity after a recent turn of events.
by Keenya Jackson
Minnie and Elizabeth are the final contestants on America’s newest reality TV show America’s Favorite Feminist. The winner will receive her own day time TV show, two hundred and fifty thousand dollars and…. a congressional chair. As they compete in the final challenges (which are related to both the Negro suffrage and the Women’s suffrage movements), it is revealed just how difficult those who came before them had it and how much farther we have to go to true equality in America.
by Megan Schumacher
In 1965, even after the passing of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, millions of black folks in the South were still unregistered to vote because of racial terrorism. Lowndes County in Alabama was a model for such disenfranchisement. Not one black person had registered to vote in a county where blacks outnumbered whites 4:1. Lowndes imagines two SNCC members canvassing the county to encourage terrified residents to register.