The Vagina Monologues premiered Friday night with a spectacular performance on -you guessed it- VAGINAS. The performance opened with three women dressed in all black, claiming that they were scared of vaginas. They started naming every word for vagina imaginable. The crowd laughed at some of the unusual sounding words, while others clapped. Needless to say, the crowd was enthralled right away.
The monologues ranged from fun sexual awakenings to the dark realities of sexual assault. Each performer became their character –empowered, inspired, and strengthened by their character’s own experiences. Perhaps each performance was so convincing because the experiences shared in the monologues are common themes in the everyday lives of women. Pubic hair, violence against transgender peoples, and consent were just some of the numerous topics covered.
The self-discovery and body positivity through loving one’s vagina was probably the most common subject of the monologues. Many women might not know or even want to explore their own vagina due to the stigma of vaginas in society. One monologue began with, “My vagina is a flower…I didn’t always think this, I learned it.” The notion of a woman loving her vagina and being vocal about it was awe inspiring, but almost unsettling as it is rare for a woman to so openly talk about her hoo-ha. However, that was precisely the point. The stigma that the crowd still might have felt seemed to fade as the “Vaginal Wonder” monologue continued. Almost all of the monologues had the same effect on the crowd. The audience sat captivated the entire time. Some of the more uncomfortable topics exposed the realities for many women around the word, including those in the US.
The Vagina Monologues is a bold, funny, and educational performance made even more incredible by the strong and inspiring women of UC Merced. The diverse cast of women covered a diverse range of real topics while bringing the issues to life. The language was bold and unapologetic, and the acting was impressively professional. In addition to the phenomenal performances, the Vagina Monologues raised over $4,000 to the Valley Crisis Center. Hopefully, you saw the next Vagina Monologues performance Saturday at 3pm or Sunday at 5pm.
Update: This article originally erroneously called this “The first annual” Vagina Monologues, when in fact there have been Vagina Monologues at UCM in the past.
Update: It has come to our attention that the Monologues may have earned closer to $4,000 than $6,000
Picture Credits: Justin Gonzalez