Historic Huguenot StreetNew Paltz, NY (August 31, 2021) – Historic Huguenot Street will host Pathway to the Ballot Box for its final weekend starting Saturday, September 4. Pathway to the Ballot Box is a unique immersive theatre experience that will guide visitors on a journey through more than 300 years of local women’s history. Visitors will come face-to-face with characters inspired by the real women of New Paltz’s past and learn of their challenges, triumphs, fears, and accomplishments.

This immersive theatrical experience is co-produced by ClockJack Productions and supported by a team of diverse writers, who bring authenticity and diversity to the characters being presented. Each character in the production is inspired by real women on New Paltz’s past. Audiences will get to see the 10-acre National Historic Landmark District come to life, and peak inside some of Huguenot Street’s historic structures, including the Jean Hasbrouck House, the Deyo House, and the 1717 Church and burial ground. Featuring a cast of professional performers, Pathway to the Ballot Box will transport guests backward, so we all can move forward.

“I really want the audience to have the autonomy of exploring each space and the way each woman fits into them as we attempt to blur lines between the past and the present,” says P.J. Griffith, co-producer of the program and Artistic Director of ClockJack Productions. “The piece is a call to arms that will hopefully leave the audience with a sense of how far we have come in the name of representation, and how much further we have left to go before we all share a sense of equity in the decisions being made by our own government.”

Historic Huguenot Street is honored to have the support of many SUNY New Paltz faculty and staff throughout the conceptualization and development of this program, including support from the History Department and the Theatre Arts Department. Andrea Varga is an Associate Professor of Theatre Design at SUNY New Paltz and the program’s Lead Costume Designer.

“Collaborating with a historic institution in my own community to bring the stories of strong, complicated and interesting women into our current dialogue is a privilege that beautifully combines my interests and experience,” says Varga. “This is not a replication of history, but a window into the lived experience of everyday, extraordinary women through artistic interpretation.”

For those who want to extend their experience, a Talkback luncheon will treat visitors to delicious local catering, provided by Valley Home Dining, and the opportunity to have thoughtful, inspiring conversations with a featured guest. Each luncheon will honor and highlight a different guest host, which will include Pathway to the Ballot Box producers, writers, actors, consultants, local historians, women’s rights advocates, and more. The lunch is free but space is limited; preregistration is required.

Learn more and register at huguenotstreet.org/pathway.

Pathway to the Ballot Box is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Governor's office and the New York State Legislature. This program was funded in part by Humanities New York with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

About Historic Huguenot Street

A National Historic Landmark District, Historic Huguenot Street is a 501(c)3 non-profit that encompasses 30 buildings across 10 acres comprising the heart of the original 1678 New Paltz settlement, including seven stone houses dating to the early eighteenth century. Historic Huguenot Street was founded in 1894 as the Huguenot Patriotic, Historical, and Monumental Society to preserve the nationally acclaimed collection of stone houses. Since then, Historic Huguenot Street has grown into an innovative museum, chartered as an educational corporation by the University of the State of New York Department of Education that is dedicated to preserving a unique Hudson Valley Huguenot settlement and engaging diverse audiences in the exploration of America's multicultural past in order to understand the historical forces that have shaped America.


Frances Vigna

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