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Votes for Women: What Really Happened?

Votes for Women

Director Peter Burger

Producer Julie Christie, Robin Scholes, Gavin Strawhan

Screenplay Gavin Strawhan

With With: Sara Wiseman (Kate Sheppard), Jodie Hilock (Ada Wells), Antonia Prebble, Jennifer Ludlam, Elizabeth Hawthorne

It’s October 1892 and Kate Sheppard tells the story of the suffrage campaign – a pursuit that will continue until 19 September 1983. Come and see what really happened in this fictionalisation of the time leading up to the momentous day when New Zealand women won the right to vote.

“On September 19, 1893 New Zealand women were given the vote. Hooray! For the women, in particular one Kate Sheppard, who had worked so hard and for so long - they were knocked back twice after the bill made it through the lower house but was chucked out of the upper - you'd think a glass of bubbles might have been in order. But they were a rigidly abstinent lot, the suffragettes, aligned with the temperance movement and God. Votes for Women: What Really Happened still managed to be a rather jolly romp through a version of what really happened that had the benefit of ringing true. Kate Sheppard's idea of a party was unfermented grape juice and raw vegetables (vegetarianism was a fad) or a nice cup of tea. ... A clever device of shooting this fictionalisation of the fight for votes as if it was a fly-on-the-wall documentary meant that questions, asked by the unseen documentary maker, could be asked and answered … This was excellent stuff: informative and lively, and it should be shown again, especially to young ladies who may have no idea of what ever happened, let alone what really did. (Does it take liberties? Of course it does. Who cares? Not me.)”TimeOut