Theater production shocked, inspired

The cast for the play, 'The Vagina Monologues', besides a few that were missing for various reasons, rehearse for the first time together to block with a set on Sunday morning, February 1. Photo by Rachel Johnson

The cast for the play, ‘The Vagina Monologues’, besides a few that were missing for various reasons, rehearse for the first time together to block with a set on Sunday morning, February 1. Photo by Rachel Johnson

The MSU Theater production of “The Vagina Monologues,” last weekend was a powerful and moving performance of a show that all women need to see.

When I first got seated I was surprised at how small the venue was and how few seats there were, but by the time the show began I understood the need for such an intimate setting. There is just no way to talk about vaginas without it feeling intimate and personal.

The set and costume design was minimal but effective, providing zero distractions from what the audience should be focusing on—the message.

The beauty of “Monologues” lies in the undeniable relatability of the message. Every woman can relate to the uniquely female experiences that come with sex, body image, periods, pregnancy and sexual assault.

Despite the fact that nearly half the world lives through these experiences every day, it seems like the word ‘vagina’ and everything that goes along with it is taboo to talk about. Not in this show. It was refreshing and moving to hear real women talk openly about real things. I felt like I was the one speaking sometimes, like all of us were speaking.

By far the most entertaining performances came from Hope Harvick’s “My Angry Vagina,” and Ellanor Collins’ “The Woman Who Loved to Make Vaginas Happy.” Both Collins’ performance of various types of moans and Harvick’s ranting from a vagina’s perspective had me and the rest of the audience howling with laughter.

However, Collins’ ‘My Vagina Was My Village’ and Kaylor Winter-Roach’s ‘The Little Coochi Snorcher That Could’ had me tearing up and holding my best friend’s hand just to get through it. Once again, I was grateful for the intimate setting that made it feel like the actresses were speaking straight to me, and not out into a giant audience.

Of notable mention is Emily Stovall’s ‘They Beat the Girl Out of My Boy… Or So They Tried’. I loved that the stories of all women – not just those who were born with female anatomy – were represented.

I have been a supporter of womanhood for as long as I’ve known what it was, but by the time I left The Vagina Monologues, I felt like I had learned more about who I am and become more powerful from that knowledge.

I was surprised at the number of men in attendance but it was a welcome sight. The Vagina Monologues doesn’t hold back, and I think men would learn a lot from the frank honesty the all-female cast served up.

The Vagina Monologues shocked me, entertained me, upset me and impressed me. Because of this performance, I will definitely be going back to MSU Theater for the next production of “In The Next Room” running March 12-15, and I suggest everyone else attend as well.