WORLD PREMIERE of an opera about Matilda Joslyn Gage by Persis Parshall Vehar, libretto by Gabrielle Vehar, fully staged with orchestra, Heather Buchman, conductor. Cast includes Danan Tsan, Laura Enslin, Juliane Price, Julia Ebner, Jonathan Howell, Steve Stull, Gregory Sheppard, Jennifer Stevens (Oneida Nation), & chorus. Stage dir. Victoria King, set by David Harper, lighting by Bob Dwyer, costumes by Jody Luce.
Matilda Joslyn Gage was a visionary of women’s rights and human liberation, who -- with Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony -- wrote the arguments for, inspired the passions, and organized the political action of the 19th century women’s suffrage movement in the United States. This woman of courage and integrity publicly defied 19th century laws that forced complicity with slavery and denied women their autonomy and liberty – including the right to vote. Matilda fought for others who had been "pushed aside," and came to believe all freedom struggles are equal and interconnected. This is also the story of a remarkable corner of the world, now known as Central New York, that became a fount of free thought and radical activism for ending slavery, honoring Native American Treaties, and social justice. In addition, Gage had considerable influence on the thinking of her son-in-law, L. Frank Baum, evidenced in his stories.