Films: We Rise and New York Story


Our two acclaimed short films play regularly in the Robert H. Smith Auditorium

We Rise: A Film from the Center for Women's History

Running time: 17 minutes
Shows every hour on the half hour in the Robert H. Smith Auditorium

On November 6, 1917, women in New York State gained the right to vote. Amidst the arduous 70-year fight for suffrage, activists also brought to light myriad social issues, from labor conditions to racism to birth control. Narrated by Meryl Streep and featuring the song "We Are Here" written and composed by Alicia Keys, "We Rise" places women at the center of political thought and action that reshaped the country in the early 20th century.

Through artistic projections, immersive sound, and theatrical lighting, the unique 17-minute film created by Donna Lawrence Productions profiles some of the remarkable women whose advocacy for change had lasting effects—including Lillian Wald, nurse and founder of Henry Street Settlement; Addie Hunton, suffragist and leader of black women's organizations; Margaret Sanger, birth control activist; and Clara Lemlich, who led the massive strike of shirtwaist workers in New York's garment industry in 1909; as well as women such as Clara Driscoll, head of Tiffany Studios' Women's Glass Cutting Department, who found new opportunities for work and independence in New York City during the era.

New York Story

Running time: 18 minutes
Shows every hour on the hour in the Robert H. Smith Auditorium

New York Story, narrated by Liev Schreiber, is an 18-minute theatrical media experience. Shown in our state-of-the-art theater, it illuminates the story of the nation by exploring the story of New York and its rise from a remote outpost to a city at the center of the world.

Through immersive video projection, moving scenic elements, theatrical lighting, surround sound and a show design that evolves over the course of the experience, visitors will witness the dynamic forces that have shaped the nation and the city, discovering themes and core notions that sit at their nexus. The overall vista expands from 25’ to 73’ wide high-resolution images over the course of the show. 

Funding to share We Rise online provided by:
Kelly Williams and Andrew Forsyth

With additional gifts from:
Daisy Soros, Joyce Chang & David Robbins, Joan Granlund, Allison Holtzschue, Francine A. LeFrak Foundation

We Rise co-producers:
Susan and Roger Hertog, the Leonard and Judy Lauder Fund, Jean Margo Reid, Robert H. Smith Family

We Rise associate producers:
Richard Gilder and Lois Chiles, Leni and Peter May

Other support:
Jennifer and John R. Monsky, Daria L. and Eric J. Wallach

Additional funds:
Field Family Foundation, Fredrica S. and Stephen J. Friedman, Brenda Grassey, Amanda and Neal Moszkowski, Joan and Michael Steinberg, Barbara and John Vogelstein

Public support:
New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, Empire State Development and I LOVE NEW YORK under the Office of the Governor; Regional Economic Development Council Initiative