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Suffrage Coalition presents A Vote of Her Own Musical DebutSaturday, Aug 20, 2022

Ticket Price

$37.00 - $57.00

Buy Tickets

Door Time

7:00 PM

Show Time

8:00 PM

A Vote of Her Own debut a new musical celebrating over 100 years of voting rights for American Women

Tickets on sale June 3 at 10:00am.

The story of "A Vote of Her Own" begins with a phone call.

I was on a tour in Michigan when I was contacted by Wanda Sobieski, a Knoxville lawyer who had heard "Votes for Women", a half hour special that I had produced for public radio. She asked permission to use the script in a skit at a fundraiser for a scholarship for women at the University of Tennessee Law School. I was intrigued, but cautious. I finally said, "Okay, but I have to be able to come and help with it and I will bring the music." We laugh about that now, but it was the beginning of a great friendship.

Wanda asked me if I had heard the story about the role of Tennessee as the last state to ratify the 19th amendment to the U.S. Constitution, securing the right to vote for American women. I hadn't heard that particular piece of history, so she started sending me articles and books. I came to do research at the East Tennessee History Center and the McClung Collection archives in Knoxville, as well as the Tennessee State Archives in Nashville. Then I proceeded to write a song, a special for public radio, a stage show which debuted at the Bijou Theatre, and a public television special, now titled "How Southern Women Won the Vote.”

Much of my earlier work had been based on primary resources, such as the letters and papers of the people who were there at the time. I found that by using their own words and observations to form lyrics and dialogue, I could be truer to history than by just imagining what they might have said. Their own words have immense impact.

Meanwhile, Wanda Sobieski founded the Suffrage Coalition and conceived of and raised the money for the Tennessee Woman Suffrage Memorial Statue in Market Square. She followed up later with the Burn Memorial Statue, just a block away.

In 2018, when Wanda suggested that I write a new musical for the 100th anniversary of the suffrage vote, I was interested and excited. I asked my friend, Nashville singer and songwriter, Janne Henshaw, to collaborate with me on songs for the new show, "A Vote of Her Own.” With assistance from Cosette Collier, professor at Middle Tennessee State University's Department of Recording Industry, Janne and I recorded piano/vocal versions of the songs for the show. Alan Reitano of American Entertainments Works, inc.. joined the team as technical director. Both Cosette and Alan bring a wealth of experience in production work and their musical sensibilities are invaluable. Through my friends at the MTSU Music Department, I met the enormously talented Nashville composer, Daniel Bondaczuk, who created arrangements for the songs, and Jeffrey Keever, the conductor for the fabulous Middle Tennessee Sinfonietta. With Cosette Collier engineering and Jeffrey Keever conducting, we recorded all 14 songs with a ten-piece orchestra, composed of clarinet, trumpet, trombone, violin, piano, bass, guitar, drums and even some banjo and mandolin.

We included some vintage music of the period along with our originals for this lively, engaging collection of songs which reveals jazz, ragtime, old- time and ballad influences. We will also feature some dynamic dance numbers, choreographed by Megan Pennington, who also portrays Knoxville's own Lizzie Crozier French, one of the figures in the Tennessee Woman Suffrage Memorial Statue. That statue becomes part of the stunning opening to the musical when each figure in the statue steps up to sing lyrics from her own speeches. This compelling title song reminds us that until 1920 women in this country did not have a constitutional assurance of a vote. It's an important story, passionate, often comical, and ultimately life-changing.

It has been a delightful bit of magic to watch the actors take on these roles and embrace these characters. The 1920's costumes are lovely and effective in setting the mood of the musical. It is truly an experience of "History meets musical theater", and I encourage people to get their tickets early. It will be a night to remember.

- Candace Corrigan, playwright, songwriter

Songs by Candace Corrigan and Janne Henshaw
Book by Candace Corrigan



Health & Safety Information:
Currently, there no are COVID entry requirements for this event.
We will follow guidance from local and state officials in line with CDC recommendations. We will keep you updated, as needed, as we approach the show date, keeping our guests, artists, crew, and staff's safety top of mind.
Masks are recommended but not required for patrons.

We reserve the right to revoke tickets sold to a broker or unauthorized third party. If you are holding a revoked ticket, you will not be admitted and will not receive a refund.

Production Note:
This event is a rental engagement presented by a third-party promoter.


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