Arts

WRC Presents: The Vagina Monologues

March 13th, 2017

Vagina Monologues 2017

The Vagina Monologues is an episodic play written by Eve Ensler which covers various aspects of the feminine experience, from sex, to menstruation, to rape. The series of monologues are performed by various women of many backgrounds and cover a variety of women’s issues with both humour and sincerity. The recurring theme throughout the play presents the vagina as a form of female empowerment and the embodiment of individuality. The original play was based on 200 interviews Ensler conducted with women on their personal views of the female experience. The UBCO Women’s Resource Centre has hosted the Vagina Monologues annually for over three years. This year the monologues were performed in The Well on February 24 and all proceeds were donated to the Elizabeth Fry Society, which supports women and children who are victims of domestic disputes, and offers resources for those in need of empowerment.

We compiled some testimonials from the talented students who collaborated to create the 2017 Vagina Monologues.

Organizer: Erica Cook

Position: Co-Coordinator of WRC

“The monologues are important because they share the experience of all women; they allow for all people to access and learn from experiences they might not otherwise have encountered. Hosting them three years ago was the first time I truly felt empowered by the word ‘feminist’ and where I met some of the most inspiring women […] this year has been the most meaningful for me yet, as it is not only my last year at UBC and as a part of the WRC, but is it also the biggest crowd we have ever had, and we raised over $500 for the Elizabeth Fry Society. But most importantly, I was lucky enough to work with some of the most driven, passionate and beautiful women I have ever met.”


Organizer: Tamara Raine

Position: Co-Coordinator of WRC

“I am super proud of Erica for organizing this event for the third year in a row. She did a great job picking performers, each one [shone] perfectly. This event is so important in getting out the message that many women can have many different experiences with their sexuality and their bodies. Each experience is unique and brings forward a story. I hope this event let some women feel like they have a voice.”


MC: Jaclyn Salter

Position: General Manager

“I am so grateful for the opportunity to participate in The Vagina Monologues this year. I got to work with so many amazing people and watch a crowd of people laugh, cry, and relate to the performers. I hope this tradition continues into the future and more people get to watch and participate!”


Performer: Laide Galla

Piece: “Hair”

“When I read The Vagina Monologues, it really brought to my attention how unconsciously silent not just me but most women are about our vaginas. When I first walked around with the book, I would turn it over when someone walked by just because the word ‘vagina’ was on it. I’ve learned and unlearned a lot since the first time I read it years ago and I’m so happy I did. I thought, “Why am I ashamed?” I didn’t realize what a burden it was not being able to voice my experiences. I’m taking part in The Vagina Monologues to compensate for the years I’ve been silent about my vagina with absolutely no fear and it’s exciting and liberating.”


 

Performer: Alex Davison

Piece: “The Woman Who Loved to Make Vaginas Happy”

“I love The Vagina Monologues for many reasons, but the main reason I love ‘The Woman Who Loved to Make Vaginas Happy’ is because it creates a sensual space for queer women to express themselves outside of the male gaze, which isn’t seen in the media too often. I’ve always been blunt with my feminism, sexuality and anatomy. The Vagina Monologues is a great mode for that bluntness.”


 

Performer: Elizabeth Fagbola

Piece: “Because He Liked to Look at It”

“The Vagina Monologues were such an amazing experience for me. It wasn’t just because it was fun to play someone I wasn’t, but it was truly fun to interact with everyone in the cast as well as watch them bring their characters to life. I think that’s it’s important to educate people on how different women feel about vaginas and just stop the negativity related to that word and everything that comes with it. I learnt to appreciate myself as a woman and be proud of every part of me no matter what others think.”


 

Performer: Alysha Southam

Piece: “My Angry Vagina”

“TVM are important because they’re a fun way to draw attention to these very real issues women face. It’s boring and not engaging to just read about these issues but it is much more entertaining to watch a performance. It was also incredibly empowering for me to be able to speak about these issues in such a public place.”


 

Performer: Stephanie Prentice

Piece: “I Call You Body”

“Although I have always had deep respect for Eve Ensler and the work that she does, I can’t say that The Vagina Monologues really resonated with me on a personal level. It wasn’t until Erica Cook asked me to read “I Call You Body,” the spotlight monologue and a beautiful piece that was written this year to summarize the larger picture of women around the world, that I found personal meaning. I don’t know that I can articulate at this time what exactly it means to me, but it’s a piece that I can feel at the depth of my core and cannot read without crying.”


 

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