“Henrietta Swan Leavitt (July 4, 1868 – December 12, 1921) was an American astronomer. A graduate of Radcliffe College, she worked at the Harvard College Observatory as a “computer”, tasked with examining photographic plates in order to measure and catalog the brightness of stars. This work led her to discover the relation between the luminosity and the period of Cepheid variables*. Leavitt’s discovery provided astronomers with the first “standard candle” with which to measure the distance to faraway galaxies.” – Wikipedia *Cepheid Definition: any of a class of variable stars whose very regular light variations are related directly to their intrinsic luminosities and whose apparent luminosities are used to estimate distances in astronomy.
The work of Henrietta Swan Leavitt lets us review where we were when she was born in 1868 and when she died just over a hundred years ago . . . “A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.” Henrieta Leavitt gave us the ability to judge distances across the universe.
This true story of 19th-century astronomer Henrietta Leavitt explores a woman’s place in society during a time of immense scientific discoveries, when women’s ideas were dismissed until men claimed credit for them. Social progress, like scientific progress, can be hard to see when one is trapped among earthly complications; Henrietta and her female peers believe in both, and their dedication changed the way we understand both the heavens and Earth.
Recommended for Ages 12+
Jessica Robins as Henrietta Leavitt
Jillian Faulk as Margaret Leavitt
Mason Quinn as Peter Shaw
Rachel Permann as Annie Cannon
Deya Ozburn as Williamina Fleming
Directed by pug Bujeaud
Performances of SILENT SKY run from January 21 – February 6, 2022
Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30pm – Sundays at 2:00pm
Visit online for tickets – tix6.centerstageticketing.com/sites/tacomalt/event-details.php?e=377