Artists prepare for Vagina Monologues

 

The Vagina Monologues will take place Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, Feb 10, 11, 12.Photo courtesy mansibhatia.com

 

The Women’s Resource Center is holding a three-part silent art and donation auction fundraiser as a part of Southern Oregon University’s tenth annual production of The Vagina Monologues. Each of the shows later this week will feature a variety of items to bid on during intermission. Performances will be this Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, Feb 10,11, and 12 in the Britt Ballroom at 8:00 p.m.

Donations for the auction have been made by various local organizations and businesses in the Rouge Valley.  In addition, SOU student artists have been invited to create paintings, drawings, and other projects to donate to the auction.

SOU senior and student artist Tyler Stanley is in the process of finishing his painting for the auction.

“I wanted to contribute something to the women’s movement”, said Stanley, who has never attended a showing of The Vagina Monologues. “I see myself as a revolutionary, so it’s pretty natural that I take part in this extremely important revolution”.

In order to effectively participate in the silent auction, bidders should write their offers on the card corresponding to the desired item with contact information. The person with the highest bid will receive a pick-up call after the last show.

The majority of the proceeds resulting from the auction—90 percent—along with all funds collected from ticket sales will be donated to local non-profit organizations dedicated to assisting women in crisis such as the Dunn House women’s shelter and Sexual Assault Victim Services.  The remaining 10 percent will be given to Women and Girls of the Democratic Republic of Congo, SOU’s international spotlight campaign.

Last year, $6,500 was raised for local and international organizations. This year, WRC staff members are anticipating 1000 tickets to be sold.

The play was first written and performed by Eve Ensler in1996. It was originally based on a series of interviews with over 200 women concerning their views on various topics like relationships, sex, and violence against women.

Since this time it has been presented in over 800 venues around the globe. The Vagina Monologues production is now performed primarily as the cornerstone fund-raising tool for the international V-Day campaign. The V-Day movement encourages communities around the world to host events such as the Vagina Monologues every year to raise money for non-profit organizations dedicated to aiding women in crisis situations.

Since the launch of the V-Day campaign in 1998, $75 million has been raised by different women’s anti-violence and empowerment organizations.

Although no two productions are done exactly the same, there is a constant theme of empowerment, celebrating women, and addressing certain controversial issues often viewed as taboo by mainstream society.

SOU student Naomi Nagler participated in last year’s play.

“The concept is really important, and the show is really great as long as it’s directed with compassion and sensitivity to the really difficult subjects,” Nagler said.

“Some renditions of the play are done with a man-hating mentality, which I think is counterproductive to what is trying to be accomplished. It should be done without putting men down because it’s about bringing people together around really important issues,” Nagler said.

Tickets are available for purchase at the WRC for $8. Anyone wishing to volunteer or donate an auction item should contact Samantha Niemeyer at 541-552-6216.

 

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