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Proud Archivist stages The Vagina Monologues to benefit women’s refuge centre nia

PUBLISHED: 14:42 12 February 2016 | UPDATED: 12:51 14 February 2016

Lorna Downing in the Vagina Monologues (Picture:  Peter Jones)

Lorna Downing in the Vagina Monologues (Picture: Peter Jones)

Archant

A play bringing taboo female topics like menstruation and vaginal discharge out into the open, will raise money for East London women’s charity Nia, which works to end violence against women.

Sophie Wright in the Vagina Monologues (Picture: Peter Jones) Sophie Wright in the Vagina Monologues (Picture: Peter Jones)

The Vagina Monologues was first performed in 1996, and since then its author Eve Ensler began the V-Day Movement, which sees benefit performances of the play take place globally in February to benefit rape crisis centres and women’s shelters.

Each of the 12 monologues deals with an aspect of the feminine experience, touching on matters such as sex, love, rape, menstruation, female genital mutilation, masturbation, birth, orgasm and the various common names for the vagina.

The script is tweaked every year with different monologues deleted and added, to ensure it is always relevant and reflective of current issues.

Sophie Wright, an actress returning to work now that her youngest children are at sixth form college, is taking part in the performance at the Proud Archivist this weekend, along with 11 other women from all walks of life aged from their early 20s to into their 70s, all united by producer and director Steph Gaynor whose idea it was to stage the show.

Jodie McGregor in the Vagina Monologues (Picture: Peter Jones) Jodie McGregor in the Vagina Monologues (Picture: Peter Jones)

Sophie believes it’s important to take part.

She said: “The show enables taboo subjects to be brought into the open which enables women to connect with each other, know they are not alone and that the feelings they have are shared, and whilst the show does tackle some harrowing experiences, it also finds the funny side of life, so some laughs are pretty much guaranteed along the way.”

She continued: “Even the word ‘vagina’ and its unprintable alternatives are felt as taboo by many.

“Some of the taboo’s that the show covers are, sex, orgasm, finding the clitoris, and are hilarious in places.

“Other parts are achingly sad when dealing with the experiences of hysterectomy, transgenderism and vaginal discharge.

“The 2016 edition looks at a subject close to my heart, that of planet Earth and what we must do to protect her.”

The show at the Proud Archivist in Hertford Road, De Beauvoir, runs from Friday February 19 to Sunday February 21 at 7.30pm.

Tickets cost £12 in advance, £15 on door, advance booking is recommended.

Book tickets at tinyurl.com/jm5asxh.

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