The Chandler Recital Hall welcomed the ladies of the Women Center as they braved the stage this Valentine’s Day weekend for the presentation of “The Vagina Monologues: Honoring the Stories of Women.”This annual benefit production, co-sponsored by Housing and Resident Life and ODU VOX, premiered Feb. 14 and Feb. 15 at 7 p.m., and Feb. 16 at 2 p.m.The play celebrated women’s sexuality and strength by weaving together grace, courage, and wit depicted in 15 unique and powerful monologues. Old Dominion undergraduate and graduate students, who performed the play, took the audience for a rollercoaster ride of emotions influenced by the stories of women worldwide.The award-winning play was written in 1996 by Eve Ensler, founder of V-Day, a global activist organization that increases the awareness of sexual violence towards women and girls. Ensler based the play on real interviews she had with over 200 women of all ages, races, and ethnic identities.This award-winning play, however, is no stranger to ODU.“This is the third year [the play has been running],” Joann Bautti, assistant director of the Women’s Center, said. “I brought it back in 2012, and before then it had been seven years since we had it [“The Vagina Monologues”].”Alongside Bautti, the play was co-directed by Saige Hill, empowerment and activism Intern.One student performer, sophomore mass communications major Timaiah Smith, speaks about how she prepared for this play.“You have to keep in mind that you’re doing this for so many women who have been through so much. Be the advocate for those women and just keep them in mind. I feel like that really helps me stay positive and go out there and put on a good show,” Smith said.Symone Mercado, a graduate student in the humanities department with an emphasis on women’s studies, explained what “The Vagina Monologues” means.
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