By Megan O’Connell
“Hello penises and vaginas,” said director Andi Carpe as she and co-director Jennifer Orlowsky introduced The Vagina Monologues to the audience in the BLC Theater last weekend. The play was sponsored by Vox, and all proceeds went to a charitable organization called WomenSpace.
The Vagina Monologues chronicles interviews of 200 women from all over the world and of all ages who were asked to talk about one of the most uncomfortable and sheltered topics: their vaginas.
This is a very different kind of play. It was originally a one-woman show written and performed off-Broadway by Eve Ensler. It is now performed all over the world. There is no music, no plot line, no props and not much action between characters. There are only compelling stories of amazing women’s experiences and opinions. Through their stories, women discuss the struggles and happiness of being a woman. Every woman and man, can relate to at least one of these gripping stories.
There are 15 monologues and a few “vagina facts,” each of them more interesting and unique than the one before. There is never a dull moment because of the variety of the monologues.
The show starts off with humorous stories about how different women learned what their vaginas meant to them and how it helped them find themselves. Everyday feminine issues like tampons, gynecologist visits and pubic hair are given a funny twist. These issues are relatable to the average woman, and the interviews range from young girls to a 73-year-old woman reluctant to talk openly about her sex life.
The monologues then take a more serious turn. One monologue is about transgendered women and their difficult journeys. Some monologues are the tragic stories of rape victims and how their lives have changed. The monologues shed light on a very important issue about the destruction and rape of women in Bosnia and the Congo.
No matter the topic of the story, each monologue was brought to life by each actor. The women reciting the monologues had a superb ability to give each story an attitude that kept the audience captivated and attentive. Dressed in red and black outfits, the actors presented these embarrassing issues of sexuality in a new, entertaining way. Five chairs with lecterns and microphones were set up across the stage. After each story the actress left and the next came on with a new and exciting monologue. The actresses were never out of character. From the moment they walked on the stage to the moment they left, the actresses were completely convincing as the women whose monologues they were reciting. Every range of emotion was felt during this play. Each actress brought a totally different aspect to her character, able to carry the audience into her monologues.
With the convincing acting of the cast, the hour-and-45-minute play was appealing throughout. Each actress seemed perfect for the role she played. The audience members found themselves completely involved with every actress and monologue.
The Vagina Monologues sends an important message of independence to women all over the world without preaching or being angrily feminist. Although some may see the play as controversial for its openness about sexuality, others say it is a masterpiece. It is inspirational for any woman or girl and the perfect entertainment for any girls’ night out.