That was a day at the end of October. I went out of the classroom with my teacher after class, when we ran into another teacher next classroom and her students in the corridor. The teacher next classroom saw my teacher and me and said, “Oh! All women should see this!” handing a flyer to each of us.
The pink colored paper said “The Vagina Monologues”. What? Probably there was a puzzled look on my face as I saw the flyer. So she added that that was a play and she would be appearing on it as an actress. I said “Hmm. All women…?” giggling a little because I was startled at the sensational title, but she solemnly said, “I’m serious.”
After saying good-bye to her and my teacher, I read the flyer while waiting for the subway.
A Nagoya Players Special Production
The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler
Directed by Tomomi Yoshida
“Vagina”… It never sounds like a word you want to say.
Over 200 women were interviewed about their vaginas. Based on these interviews, this play for all women has caused a sensation all over the United States.
About childhood trauma; about our own bodies; about genital mutilation that still remains; about rape, about childbirth; about violence towards women; about our happiness; etc..
Various episodes of women talk about what’s important. It’s a completely new type of play that includes tears, laughter, and some shocking truths. Let’s talk about what’s important: women and their bodies.
Sounds interesting! When I told about the play to my friends after coming back home, some of them showed interests in it. And I would be seeing the play with three of them. The play was held from November 1st to 3rd at Nagoya City Youth Exchange Plaza near Nagoya Castle. We went to see the play on the 3rd.
The play was consisted of “monologues” of many women performed by ten actresses. Each performance was set in an interview, where each actress replied as their roles to invisible and inaudible interviewer’s questions. That’s why the play is “monologues”.
As like the flyer says, there were many women’s various episodes of their own bodies and lives in the play: humiliating experiences of a middle-aged woman whose ex-husband has perverted habits; an unhappy youth memory of an old woman in her 70s who describes some lower part of her body as a musty, damp, and locked basement vault; anger of a female soldier against the treatment for women in the military; constant anguish of sexuality humiliating abuse of an Arabic woman; and delight of the original producer of the play as she attended the birth of her family…etc
It was a nice opportunity to see the play because it gave me to think about women’s body and me. Still now, I think, most parts of our society are patriarchal and it tends to be passive for women by their physical features. Women themselves tend to avoid talking about their bodies to even the same sex friends, especially about some certain part of their bodies-vagina. It’s because the part is easy to be linked to sexual matters, which are usually kind of embarrassing to talk. Most of us, however, were born into this world through the exact that place. Vagina is not disgraceful at all, is rather mysterious and sacred.