V-Day monologues continue message of peace in ‘MMRP’

ReAnne Utemark

Eleven performers in very different scenes pervaded a stark, bare stage in another production to celebrate V-Day. “A Memory, A Monologue, A Rant & A Prayer,” edited by Eve Ensler, the author of “The Vagina Monologues,” included scenes about various stages and types of abuse and violence.

The first monologue was about brothers who saw a frustrated father bring a piece of cardboard down on their mother’s head. In the second, a college woman told how she faced the prospect of being gang-raped but fought until her attackers left. The third was about a woman whose husband dragged her into the world of sadism and masochism and then left her confused and upset.

“I don’t know who I am,” said the wife played by Kellie Johnson in “The Perfect Marriage” by Edward Albee.

The fourth monologue featured an actress who made a living playing dead women and prostitutes who got beaten and discussed made-for-TV movies on women’s channels. The rest of the six actors discussed the racism, rape and physical violence endured by some women. The short pieces connected all women together in a call to end the violence.

Eve Ensler and Molly Doyle edited the piece, but they had several contributing writers who wrote with no constraints or rules and were told simply to work with the theme of violence and women.

The last monologue was called “Welcome to the Wetlands” by Eve Ensler. As some of the beneficiaries are the women affected by Katrina in New Orleans, Ensler’s last monologue was about the dichotomy between the view of Americans toward New Orleans, which is one of fun, entertainment and bounty, versus the actions of Americans toward Katrina-ravaged New Orleans, one of neglect.

According to the literature handed out at the play, V-Day distributes funds to grassroots, national and international organizations and programs that work to stop violence against women and girls. The “V” in V-Day stands for Victory, Valentine and Vagina. On April 12, 2008, V-Day will celebrate “V to the 10,” which is the 10th anniversary of V-Day. The celebration will take place in the New Orleans Arena with female celebrities and speakers to heal and empower women.