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'Vagina Monologues' returns to Bates College

Carolyn Myles, a Bates College senior, directs the college’s fourth annual production of Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues at 8 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 11, in the Olin Arts Center Concert Hall, 75 Russell St. The public is invited and donations will be gratefully accepted, with proceeds going to V-Day, an international organization working to stop violence against women and girls.

A $2 donation is suggested. Tickets are available at the arts center starting at 4 p.m. on the day of the performance; no reservations are accepted, but overflow seating will be available. The production is sponsored by the Robinson Players, a student theater organization. For more information, call 207-786-6135.

Eve Ensler is an award-winning playwright, poet, activist and screenwriter. For The Vagina Monologues, she asked a diverse group of women about their thoughts and feelings regarding this part of their bodies. The play Ensler created from these interviews relates women’s stories in terms that are personal yet universal, comic and poignant, brazen and mysterious.

“The play was brought to Bates in 2001 by a friend of mine” — Ariana Margolis, of the class of 2003 — “as part of a campaign on college campuses nationwide to raise awareness of violence against women,” says Myles, of St. Louis, Mo. “Some of the monologues are more political, others are humorous and still others are quite moving.”

“It’s becoming a wonderful tradition at Bates — one that I hope continues well into the future,” she says. “I have some big shoes to fill. The previous shows have been so successful, and I want this year’s to exceed everyone’s expectations.”

Since its Obie-winning premiere, in 1996, the play has been performed to broad acclaim worldwide. Productions have featured such top actors as Glenn Close, Cate Blanchett, Winona Ryder, Susan Sarandon, Marisa Tomei, Rosie Perez, Lily Tomlin, Kate Winslett, Melanie Griffith and Calista Flockhart.

At Bates, students (including Myles herself) will perform all the monologues. Katalin Vecsey, a lecturer in the Bates theater department and the vocal coach for theater productions, has been adviser to the project since its inception.

“It’s an empowering play for everyone involved — especially the audiences!” says Myles, an American cultural studies major with a secondary concentration in theater.



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