Finally, another blog post. Haha. Korni yung title alam ko. Hahaha.
Last March 31, I was able to catch the Pinoy
version of The Vagina Monologues. This year's show marks the 12th anniversary
of the internationally-acclaimed theater act and was produced by Monique
Wilson's theater group, New Voice Company. Proceeds of the event will go to
Lila Filipina, an organization committed to bettering the lives of Pinay
comfort women during the Japanese occupation in 1945.
True to our grepa mode, we were on the
balcony seats. The show didn't start at once, probably because the producers
observed the annual Earth Hour. A few more minutes and a mini movie to
introduce the V-Day Movement was playing onscreen.
I remembered before that I was really
intrigued with the whole TVM thing. I really don't have any idea about it until
that night I saw it and of course several google searches I did after. Eve
Ensler, an American playwright, interviewed around 200 women on their memories
and experiences about their female sexuality. She compiled these varied stories
of abuse, exploitation, coming-of-age, freedom, triumph and many more and
created a play that would soon launch a global movement to advance the cause of
women empowerment and ending violence against women.
In 2002, I learned that Eve came to Manila to
interview Filipinas exploited by Japanese soldiers during the nightmarish Second
World War. On 31, Filipinos were able to hear Eve's piece entitled "Say It For The Comfort Women",
a monologue narrating the horrors of the war and urging the Japanese government
to say sorry to these Filipinas they have abused. The compelling speech was
given life by acclaimed theater actress Pinky Amador. It was both moving and
scary for me. I dunno why. Maybe because of the pictures of old women onscreen-- one could still see the pain etched on their wrinkled faces despite the many years that have gone by; or maybe because I likened the incidence to what happened during the
Rape of Nanking, another Japanese doing.
We hope they'll really say their apologies to the women who
were equally ravaged by that war. It would take time, I know, but we really
hope they'll do it.
Anyways, overall, I like the whole play.
There are speeches that I especially liked-- those which I appreciated most and those which I thought celebrated femininity at best (char haha).
Here's TVM's most powerful scenes (well, in my opinion, hehe):
Flood. The monologue is based upon a conversation with an old
women, a grandmother to be more exact. I forgot the name of the speaker but
well I really appreciated how she gave life to this one. The granny in this
monologue talks about her "down there" and all the other feelings and
experiences she had with it. Hahaha. Quite weird but it's totally great and
funny when you hear it. Plus, you'll really feel that one tough
"lola" in the speech.
Village is my Vagina. So this part's a bit the same with Say It
For The Comfort Women. It talks of rape camps in Bosnia and Kosovo during their
civil war intertwined with beautiful images of their fields and farms. The
monologue was both beautiful and haunting-- the coldness in the speaker's voice
and the heated rage that comes along it sent goosebumps. The tale's sad and
poignant and very much relevant to many of today's pressing issues.
Was In The Room. Ok so this one's about Eve Ensler and how
she watched the birth of her grandchild. The whole monologue details
graphically the moment her daughter labored and eventually gave birth to her
child, allowing the audience a peak of what it feels like to bring a new life
into earth. One could imagine both pain and joy. It's one of the more happy
moments of the whole play and of course the most positive of all speeches. With
positive, I mean, that there's no talk
of abuse or hurt or discrimination, just pure human, female experience which is
After the play, the audience was asked which
of them have experienced abuse and a few women stood up. When Monique asked who
have seen abuse of women, I was one of those in the crowd who stood up. Well,
I've seen how my uncle verbally abused my aunt which was totally cruel and
degrading. I just wanna spank him one time bigtime. At least now he stopped,
Paps scolded him for doing so. As soon as I got home, I looked for the V-Day
movement and signed up. I even tweeted about it! (Ok, so not as soon as I got
home, as soon as I woke up pala the next day. Hahaha).
Yay! I intend to participate in the One Billion Rising Movement on Feb 14, 2013.
I still dunno how but definitely I'll participate. Hehehe. Anyways, you too can
join. Just visit their website, www.vday.org.
Labels: advocacy, one billion rising, playdate, the vagina monologues, women empowerment