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The Arts

NEYT’s Senior Company presents ‘Blue Stockings’

BRATTLEBORO—New England Youth Theatre will present Blue Stockings, by Jessica Swale, directed by Hallie Flower, at 7 p.m. on April 12 and 13, and at 2 p.m. on April 13, at NEYT, 100 Flat St.

The year is 1896. Girton College, Cambridge, is the first college in Britain to admit women, and the Girton girls study ferociously to match their male peers grade for grade.

Yet, when the men graduate, the women leave with nothing but the stigma of being a “Blue Stocking” — an unnatural, educated woman. They are denied degrees and go home unqualified and “unsuitable for marriage.”

In Jessica Swale’s debut play, Blue Stockings, Tess Moffat and her fellow “first years” are determined to win the right to graduate, but they don’t anticipate the hurdles in their way: the distractions of love, the cruelties of the class divide, or the strength of the opposition, who will do anything to stop them.

The play follows them over one tumultuous academic year in their fight to change the future of education.

Performed by NEYT’s Senior Company of actors, ages 13-19, this witty and thought-provoking play is a timely examination of the rights of every woman — to an education, to her own autonomy, and to ride a bicycle — all set against the larger backdrop of women’s suffrage.

Tickets are $15 for adults, $13 for seniors, and $11 for students, and may be purchased in advance at www.neyt.org, or in person at the NEYT Box Office.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #505 (Wednesday, April 10, 2019). This story appeared on page B6.

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