I got down with the vagina, the hoo-ha, the pee-pee, the lulu, the nona and the pink taco on Saturday evening, and I was in the most wonderful of moods for the remainder of my night. I would have called myself an empowered female prior to my viewing of Eve Ensler’s “The Vagina Monologues,” but after attending the show I’ll never think of “down there” the same, nor should any of the males who were in attendance.
The first half of the performance was comical and in your face, while the second half was moving, sexual, poignant and eye-opening. Its most moving aspect was that the cast was willing and able to transform a once-taboo subject into a work of art.
I especially liked the concluding vignette of the first half, “My Angry Vagina,” in which a woman spouted off her vaginal grievances – tampons; the big, cold, duck lips one sees while getting a pap smear; and cleansing tools. Why should a vagina smell like roses, she asked, when it is supposed to smell like pussy?
“The Little Coochie Snorcher That Could” was also a comical number, but it dealt with more serious subject matter. In the piece, a woman detailed traumatic experiences from her childhood that turned her away from men and the awakening affair with an older woman years later that taught her to love herself.
“Because He Liked to Look at It” was my second favorite vignette of the night. It featured a woman who spoke of personal disgust for her own vagina and how she couldn’t bear the sight of it until she met a man named Bob who said he really wanted to “see her” in bed. He spent hours down there and his awe of the subject made her believe it was magical, too. I forgot that an actress was on stage at the time because I could sense her vulnerability and attachment to the piece.
The night also focused on depressing-yet-empowering confessions like “My Vagina Was My Village” and “Say It.” Ensler interviewed several women to create this compilation of shorts. A Bosnian woman tells the story of several rape victims in her country in “My Village,” and women demand for apologies and admittance to sexual assaults in “Say It.”
Sexual pieces like “Reclaiming Cunt” and “The Woman Who Loved to Make Vaginas Happy” helped me pleasantly accept the fact that I’m a single, independent woman. I figured that, if these badass women don’t need a man, why should I?
The actress in “The Woman,” for example, was so fierce; she effortlessly dramatized extremely personal topics such as moans, orgasms and lesbianism. She told the tale of an ex-lawyer turned dominatrix for women who loves to moan and make other women moan, too. At the end of the piece, she sounded out all the different moaning sounds she hears in her line of work, including the WASP moan (a silent, reserved sort), the Irish-Catholic moan (she crosses herself while screaming “Oh, Jesus”) and finally, among others, the triple-surprise orgasm moan (acted out in full detail).
“The Vagina Monologues” is something everyone should see at some point in time. It’s different, hilarious, heartbreaking and well written, and most of all, it’s a 10 years-long movement to eradicate violence toward women and their vaginas. Amen.