Arts & Culture Editor
Millersville University’s “The Vagina Monologues” are always expected to bring laughs, tears and awareness to issues concerning women and sexuality. However, with the recent death of Millersville freshman Karlie Hall, this year’s “Vagina Monologues,” presented by the Center for Student Involvement and Leadership and Department of Housing and Residential Programs on Valentine’s Day, were dedicated to Hall and a portion of the proceeds went to the Hall family.
“The Vagina Monologues” is an episodic play written by Eve Ensler which ran at the off-Broadway Westside Theatre after a limited run at HERE Arts Center in 1996. The purpose of the monologues are to bring awareness to women’s issues concerning sex, violence and relationships.
Thalia E. Curlis, Johanna S. Rossis and Carli Weldon introduced the monologues, where they discussed the many awkward worries and tensions women have about their vaginas.
“Hair” was the second monologue was introduced by Maria N. De La Cruz, and performed by Carmen Cruz, who said the monologue in Spanish, and Lennise Santiago, who delivered the same monologue in English. The two women delivered the message, “If you can’t love hair, then you can’t love vaginas.”
“The Wear and Say List” was delivered by Thalia E. Curtis, Maria N. De La Cruz and Carli Weldon and brought comic relief to the show. They answered questions such as “What would your vagina wear” or “What would you vagina say.”
“The Flood,” introduced by Weldon and performed by Sara M. Wiberg, discussed the sexual endeavors of an older woman.
“Vagina Workshop,” delivered by Laura L. Molina, was about a woman having a sexual awakening while attending an orgasm workshop.
Sharrell Kent delivered the “Vagina Happy Fact” for the night and shared an interesting fact about the clitoris.
Maria DeFelice, Tara Herbert, Dr. Rice, Dr. Kathleen Walshand and Sara M. Wiberg took the stage to bring awareness about the transgender population in the monologue “They Beat the Girl Out of My Boy.” Although the people interviewed for the monologue were born male, they always knew that they were meant to be female. As one of the more powerful monologues written by Ensler, this monologue discussed the heartbreaking hardships that transgender individuals are often forced to endure, but also asked the question, “Who said that a woman was someone who had a vagina?”
Savannah Sinnit performed the monologue “Because He Liked to Look at It,” where a woman finally learns to love herself when she starts to date a man who helps her see her true beauty.
Moving into more serious territory, Curtis shared the “Not-So-Happy Fact” and shared the horrors of female circumcision.
Ny’Aisha Nalley delivered a hilarious, shocking, audience-favorite for the night “My Angry Vagina,” where she humorously ranted about the pains of tampons, douches and the tools used by OB/GYNs.
“My Vagina Was My Village” was performed by Kent. The monologue is based on the experience of thousands of Bosnian women who were subjected to rape camps. The audience was silent as Kent described the harrowing details of how the soldiers raped and violated her.
“My short skirt is not proof that I am stupid or undecided or a malleable little girl. My short skirt is my defiance. I will not let you make me afraid,” stated Kira Messinger in “My Short Skirt,” a monologue that tackled the issues of victim-blaming and slut-shaming.
Dr. Rita Smith-Wade-El performed the monologue “The Little Coochie Snorcher That Could,” in which a woman recalls memories of traumatic sexual experiences in her childhood and a “positive healing” sexual experience in her adolescent years with an older woman.
Tara Herbert rallied the audience with “Reclaiming Cunt,” where she illustrates that the “C-word” is a lovely word despite its disconcerting connotations.
In “A Six-Year-Old Girl Was Asked,” Curtis asked Messinger different questions about her vagina, and Messinger answered them with as much innocence of a young girl.
For the risqué, climactic finale for the evening, Amira Williams performed the monologue “The Woman Who Loved To Make Vaginas Happy.” In it, a sex worker for women discusses the intriguing details of her career and her love of giving women pleasure and helping them become more open and honest with their sexuality.
The money raised through this production went towards V-Day, an organization which helps benefit rape crisis centers and shelters for women, as well as other resources for women and the YWCA Lancaster’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Counseling Center (SAPCC). SAPCC and the Presidents Commission on the Status of Women also co-sponsored the event.