The Dickinson Community Players’ annual “The Vagina Monologues” featured women embracing themselves and each other, working to address and help combat issues many women deal with.
First performed off-Broadway in 1996, “The Vagina Monologues” is an episodic play based off of interviews on a large variety of topics conducted with women of a wide range of age groups, ethnicities and sexualities.
Historically, proceeds from the show go toward women’s anti-violence groups. This show cost $3, and all proceeds went to the women’s crisis SOS Shelter in Endicott.
“It’s 2014, and people think women’s rights is no longer a pressing issue,” said Emily Simchik, one of the directors and a senior double-majoring in history and philosophy, politics and law. “But it’s still important to support causes like this one.”
From topics like being proud of pubic hair, to pleasure during sex, to genital mutilation and rape, the monologues focused on being unashamed of the wants, needs and flaws of women.
“We forget the vagina,” read a piece titled “I Was There In the Room.” “What else could explain our lack of awe? Of reverence?”
Some males in the audience said that they had a newfound appreciation for the other sex’s genitalia.
“I think it’s important for guys to see this,” said Ken Omiya, a sophomore majoring in cinema. “They need more exposure to vaginas to better understand females.”
Cameron Parlman, a junior majoring in computer science, agreed.
“Seeing this made me realize penises are so easy,” he said.
A main topic of the performance was overcoming the patriarchal aspects of modern society and how they can harm women. One of the monologues focused on violence toward women in African countries due to war.
Other pieces, however, were more lighthearted. “Reclaiming the Cunt” moved to reverse the stigma attached to that word, ending with a victory cry of actors and audience members cheering, “CUNT! CUNT!” at the top of their lungs.
“I love vaginas. I love women,” said Corinna Kraft, a sophomore majoring in psychology. “This show is amazing because it addresses real issues, but it’s also funny.”
Performed annually, the show has become a tradition for some of the performers.
“I’ve been in the show for three years, and I finally got to direct,” said Sarah Bressler, a senior double-majoring in nursing and Spanish. “It’s been the most amazing experience I’ve had in college. People are always so shocked when they see it.”
First-timer Jenn Bochicchio said she was indeed shocked, but in a different way.
“I’ve never wanted to have an orgasm so bad in my life,” said Bochicchio, a freshman double-majoring in accounting and finance. “It was inspiring.”
The show, which was held in the Multipurpose Room of the Chenango Champlain Collegiate Center, was performed at 8 p.m. Thursday, and has another showing tonight at 6 and 9 p.m.
“I did it as a freshman, and now I’ve come full circle,” said Carly Rubenfeld, one of the directors and a senior majoring in psychology. “I feel more confident with myself as a woman.”