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Drake Students to present 'The Vagina Monologues'

February 17, 2011
"The Vagina Monologues" returns to Drake University for its 11th year of production. All three performances begin at 7 p.m. and run from February 17-19, in Bulldog Theater, Olmsted Center, 2875 University Ave. The Vagina Carnival, a pre-show exhibit, will begin before each night's performance at 6 p.m. in lower Olmsted, right outside of Bulldog Theater.

The Vagina Carnival, run by the cast members, features an activities fair of women-friendly organizations from Drake University as well as the Des Moines community, a silent auction, and even chocolate-shaped vaginas, among other concessions.

Sponsored by Students for Women's Issues and Drake University's Women's Studies Program, the event will consist of around 18 monologues performed by students and alumni, an a capella performance by the Drake TrebleMakers and a tribute to "Vagina Warriors" -- those who work to make the world a safer place.

"'The Vagina Monologues' provides a fun and approachable way to talk about the issues of violence that are normally not discussed in public," said Jennifer Henry, director and head of production of the event. "There is an educational aspect for the audience as well as a feeling of empowerment for everyone involved."

The "Vagina Monologues" is an episodic play written by Eve Ensler about femininity and empowerment and is part of a larger movement to stop violence against women. It began as a small, off-Broadway production in 1996 and is now performed at colleges, universities, and in theaters worldwide. Ensler also established V-Day, a global non-profit organization that benefits women's anti-violence groups. V-Day has now raised over $75 million through the benefits of "The Vagina Monologues."

Proceeds from the Drake production will benefit Des Moines' charity, GEEZ! Louise, an organization that provides advocacy services, education, skill building and spiritual programming for women of all ages. Last year, the production raised more than $3,000 for Des Moines area non-profit organizations.

"I think the event is much more than a play. It is a unique experience that evokes a wide range of human emotion," Henry said. "Audience members will leave feeling hopeful and inspired."

Admission is open to the public and everyone is encouraged to attend. Tickets cost $5 without a Drake ID and can be purchased at the door.

For more information about The Vagina Monologues contact Jennifer Henry at Jennifer.Henry@drake.edu.

WHAT: The Vagina Monologues

WHEN: All performances begin at 7 p.m., Feb. 17-19

WHERE: Drake University's Bulldog Theater, Olmsted Center, 2875 University Ave.

WHY: Proceeds benefit a local Des Moines non-profit organization

COST: Open to the public. Admission is free with a Drake ID, $5 without a Drake ID