Tarleton students perform “The Vagina Monologues”

By Ariel Sanchez

Multimedia Journalist

“The Vagina Monologues” is a play written by Eve Ensler. It covers topics such as consensual sexual experiences, non-consensual sexual experiences, body image and other things of that nature. It’s first ever performance was in 1996 to sold-out crowds and it’s still going strong today.

Tarleton State University’s Gay-Straight Alliance has partnered with communication studies for this event. The director, Ms. Prairie Endress-Parnell, is also an instructor for communication studies.

“This is my sixth year directing the play. I also directed it twice at Texas Tech while I was in graduate school,” Endress-Parnell said.

It has not always been easy for people to accept “The Vagina Monologues.” For the last couple years, the Gay-Straight Alliance has lost posters due to people taking them down. It’s been a serious concern and it has made Endress-Parnell and others worried. This year, students have been more accepting and the flyers have stayed up.

“So far, this year the climate has been less directly antagonistic.  We’ve only had one person say, ‘that should be illegal,’ talking about the show,” Endress-Parnell said.  

Photo courtesy of the Tarleton State Gay-Straight Alliance

The name of the play may cause some people to assume what the play is about. Ensler said in a video interview by MAKERS on YouTube, that the play is about how women experience life, and that the play addresses things that should be shared with all women of different backgrounds, sexuality, races and ages.

You don’t have to be a certain major to be a part of “The Vagina Monologues.” Endress-Parnell has a math major, two non-students, a staff member, an instructor and a pre-nursing major who are all performing in the play. Any female-identified person who wants to participate is welcome to audition.

 Auditions for next year will be held in early November and the performances for 2021 will be held Feb. 25, 26 and 27.

“Yes, we talk about vaginas. Yes, we talk about difficult topics.  But, at the end of the show, I always hear that the performance was beneficial.  The play helps people understand women, women’s experiences and the ways women are affected by society. Give the play a chance,” Endress-Parnell said.

There are two performances on Feb. 13 and 14 in the Tarleton State University Ballrooms at 7 p.m. Tickets are $5 and all proceeds from the tickets will be going to Cross Timbers Women’s Center. They will also be having a silent auction and all funds from it go to support the Gay-Straight Alliance on campus.

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