Vagina Monologues Theater Review -- Celebrating Awareness for 2009 V Day

The Vagina Monologues will play limited this weekend only (March 21, 22, 23 2009) at the TOA Theater in Hollywood celebrating Hollywood’s Annual V Day.

"The Vagina Monologues" creator Eve Ensler

In 1996 Eve Ensler wrote the original show and debuted it in Greenwich Village, NY.  Since then it’s been translated into 45 different languages and performed in over 119 countries.  And tonight it’s here for you.  Consider yourself lucky.

Yes, there’s that word:  Vagina.  As the opening speech echoes, we don’t hear the word often in everyday life.  While the body part certainly can be sexy, the word is not.  It’s clinical, scary and, well it’s many things.  All of which are discussed throughout the show.  As a cute gesture, I decided to count how many times the ladies said “vagina”.  I pretended to lose count at 79.  Then I really did lose count at 213.  It’s said a lot.  

As are many variations.  I’ve heard all of them before (save for one specific piece later in the show), but it’s still shocking to hear.  As are the many female implementations you’ll be graced with over the next 90 minutes.

22 Expressions of Power

Twenty two women comfortably fill the seats on the lit stage.  All wearing some piece of red.  That visual on its own delivers the message of the night.  We’ re all different, but in some ways we’re all the same.  We’re united by this.

Isabelle Giroux and Erin Coatney co-star in "The Vagina Monologues"

Michelle Webber was the first show-stopper.  Her “Hair” is about.... well, it’s about hair in relation to the subject matter of the title.  Not for the squeamish.  Her energy is a delight and she kicks the night off well.

Soon enough, another amazingly talented woman stands up.  And lucky us, she will return front and center several times tonight.  Isabelle Giroux.  Each time, she reveals V trivia.  Sometimes funny, sometimes poignant, sometimes shocking.  Always enlightening.

Brittany Richards and Danielle Kasen co-star in "The Vagina Monologues"

All Shapes, Sizes and Colors

And that ushers in the next message.  Sex, women; and their vaginas can be funny, sexy, and serious.  Throughout the performance we experience laughs, shock and brutal thoughts.  All from what these amazing women and other amazing women have survived.

Next one is fun by title alone and the performance is brought to life by Thela Brown and Brittany Richards.  Ready for this: “The Little Coochie Snorter That Could.”  Whew.

Natalie Marciano and Hanna Juurakko contribute to "The Vagina Monologues"

In the opening minutes of the show, the crowd is nervous.  At the first mention of the “V” word, everyone jumps.  It’s startling.  By the fifth time, only the guys are still shaking.  Nearing the end, it almost becomes familiar.  Welcomed.    

Frances Washington and Dorothy Sinclair deliver “I was there in the room”.  I always enjoy veteran performers because they can share their entire history with you with just one good look.  These two women are no exception.  Their grace, candor and comfort glow on stage.  A warm welcoming way to end the performances of the evening.


A young woman bravely takes the stage and confesses to the audience that she’s been sexually assaulted in her life.  Then she encourages anyone in the audience who also has been assaulted to stand.  First one, then three, then twelve.  Next thing, over half the audience is on their feet.

And that’s when I realized.  To the best of my knowledge, I don’t know any women who’ve ever been sexually abused.  As I watched scattered people around me stand, I realized chances are I do.  That’s a sobering statistic.

Good Cause

This V Day event is to help support The Haven House.  It helps abused women and their children on their way towards a life free of violence by providing a safe haven for them.  They strive to educate the public about domestic violence and advocate for the needs of battered women with makers for public policy.

See this show for a few reasons.  One, it’s fun and that’s important to a good night out.  Two , it’s well-done and that should be rewarded.  Three, it’s a good cause with great silent auction prizes.

There’s nothing wrong with learning while laughing.  There’s nothing wrong with enjoying a show with a room full of beautiful women.

Behind-a the Vagina

Kudos go to Organizer/Producer Hanna Juurakko for assembling a fast-moving, heart-touching production using everything she can find.   Producer/Director Maureen Conway was the glue that held all the other pieces together. Associate producer/Directors Erin Coatney and Natalie Marciano work hard to make each night a success, and they’re clearly succeeding.

The Vagina Monologues plays at the TOA Theater March 20, 21, 22 at 8pm.  For more information visit:  TOA Theater is located at 1625 N. Las Palmas, Hollywood, CA. 90028

Arrive a few minutes early to take part in the silent auction.  Great prizes ranging from television and movie memorabilia to local restaurants and romantic games.

For more information on the Haven House, please visit: www.

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