The Vagina Monolgues Raise Awareness for V-Day
Monday, February 13, 20120 Comments
The Vagina Monologues is a production put on annually in recognition of V-Day, a global initiative to end violence against women. This year, producer Keren and director Emily spoke with me about their inspirations, challenges and the future of the Monologues.
The cast of 21 people is made of of a diverse group of women, most of which who do not have theatre in their backgrounds. Auditions took place in September, but the executive has been making plans since the summer. According to Keren, the process is a lengthy one and a learning curve for everyone involved, but is a rewarding experience that will stay with them for the rest of their lives.
90% of proceeds are being directed to the Women in Crises Centre and the Wellness Centre on campus. The remaining 10% will be used to fund campaigns in Haiti, including three safe houses for sexual violence and four legal aid clinics. Since the 2010 Haiti earthquake, rape has become an epidemic in the refugee camps.
When asked what the biggest difficulty in creating the show is, Emily responded that time coordination is difficult for such a large number of people. As well, it is an ongoing challenge to engage men. While there are no male actors in the show, they can be involved; as ushers, on the crew, or as sponsors.
Keren says that they most rewarding thing about being a part of the Vagina Monologues is the supportive community that is built between everyone involved. A healing environment is created in the time that they spend together, where stories and experiences can be shared. As well, the Monologues can potentially be a life changing experience for the audience, and the goal is to enlist a feeling of not being alone or embarrassed to have a vagina.
The target audience of this production is everyone. It aims to educate, break down the stigma of sexual violence, and dispel negative stereotypes. Because the Vagina Monologues as a whole were created 17 years ago, the material is slightly dated which has proved to be a challenge.
The Monologues themselves are funny, heartfelt, sexy and shocking at times, as well as informative and inclusive for everyone involved. It is an experience like none that I have ever encountered. If you have never had a chance to be involved, I suggest you look into it in the future. You will not be disappointed, and may even come away from it enlightened.
For more information or how to become involved, please contact: