Mosaic / Reviews / Theater / February 15, 2012

Vaginas for Valentine’s Day

Vagina.

It’s a word that, when dropped into conversation, can leave people uncomfortable — something The Vagina Monologues sets out to explore.

Performed in the Studio Theatre Lobby this past Saturday, Feb, 11 — two showings that both drew crowds of well over 50 people — The Vagina Monologues is a show performed all around the country near Valentine’s Day. The show consists of monologues written after over 200 interviews with women from every walk of life. The subject of said interviews?

Vaginas.

“Women secretly love to talk about their vaginas,” announced an ensemble member during the introduction to the show, which explained how “The Vagina Monologues” came about.

Although hundreds of performances occur each year, each one is slightly different, as participants can pick and choose which monologues they want to have performed. One of the greatest strengths of the Knox show was how well suited each actor was for her monologue, making it easy for the audience to relate with the stories being told.

Directed by junior Avery Wigglesworth, the Knox show included monologues from a woman whose husband claimed the reason he cheated was her refusal to shave her vagina, a woman who spent her whole life avoiding sex because she had been told her vagina was “smelly” and disgusting and conversely, a woman who couldn’t stand the thought of herself until a man told her how beautiful her vagina really was. Throughout all of the stories, it was easy to identify themes that, at some level, rang true for all women: feeling shame about their sexual desires and not having an outlet to discuss such feelings.

The final two monologues, however, stole the show. Sophomore Grace Moran’s monologue on how her vagina was angry about mistreatment — referring to doctor’s visits as akin to being attacked with cold duck lips — was both funny and relatable and was delivered with a poignant power. Freshman Chloe Luetkemeyer left the audience in stitches with her imitations of the numerous types of female orgasms, a gutsy performance filled with heart and character that didn’t hold back.

The show could have benefited, perhaps, from starting with a funny monologue to loosen up the audience, who at first felt slightly uncomfortable with the topic at hand. However, as the tension slowly left the room, the evening became an open experience that created an opening for a topic highly in need of discussion.

That is, vaginas.

Cast and crew

Directed by junior Avery Wigglesworth

Ensemble:

Chloe Luetkemeyer (sophomore)

Rachel Jackson (freshman)

Grace Moran (sophomore)

Alexia Vasilopoulos (freshman)

Megan Young (senior)

Paula Castanos (freshman)

Sam Auch (freshman)

Kate LaRose (junior)

Cristina Mateu (freshman)

Women were asked, “If your vagina got dressed, what would it wear?”

Answers included:

Armani only

A tutu

Something machine washable

Sweatpants

High heels

Combat boots

Katy Sutcliffe


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