24.4.10

Vag Mong

After an extraordinary amount of deliberation on how to kick the doolblog back into gear, I figured last night’s inspired viewing of the Vagina Monologues at the Butterfly playhouse was as good an impetus as any. Back on. Straight in.

***
The Vagina Monologues, acclaimed byproduct of interviews by playwright Eve Ensler with over 200 women about their experiences of sexuality and identity has become an unparalleled expression of female power since it’s virginal showing in Greenwhich Village in 1996. Some stories wrench the heart, others breed chuckles - all are inspired and empowering in their own measure.

Ensler's word continues to spread; tonight's adaption of vag mong is another call to arms for female-kind, a frank exposition and an overdue dialogue to prize open minds, hearts, sexuality, and of course, vaginas.

Victorian terrace-gone-cabaret-salon the Butterfly club is every bit the swanky labyrinth it purports to be, and we're instantly charmed by the promised intrigue and kitsch delight. Thin hallways, skewif staircases and lounge sports mustachioed busts, dust-caked prints and a cache of hundreds of figurines and dolls clustered atop an open fire with stunning OCD scrupulousness. A mischievous barkeep with afro mushrooming from his modest sized head supplies me with a chilled Boags instead of a signature vag-mong ‘Shanghai Butterfly’ and dubs me ‘beard-man’. Heavy on the vajutz vibe, patron gender tonight sits well over a six to one ratio. I surmise that a deficiency of manly camaraderie has enamored the barkeep of disproportionate follicle with my rugged ranga beardliness.

Before too long we are ushered into a quaint playhouse, finding cosiness in the form of pre-war brown leather antique pews. Attention is immediately usurped by the thirty-eight miscellaneous plaster vaginas surrounding us on the walls like playful eyes– hairy, sleek, pert, wide, lush, long, fluffy and lazy - a plethora of pussynalities, gritty, raw and real. Not unlike the soliloquies of the ‘Vagina Monologues’ themselves.

In place of lead Vee Cybulski, opening night understudy Mel Calia treads the boards early and proves her class in spades; director-lead Hayley Deutrom kicks the show into gear with signature chutzpah, while effusive Nina Vallins’ no- bullshit, boisterous sass charms the pants off us all. Heartwrenching, pensive and profound, Ting Cheng’s 'comfort women' stirs at the depths, while Grace Travaglia’s retrospective 'My vagina is my village' is vehement and utterly devastating. Powerhouse Tereza Jancar, plunging fresh zest into a delicious deconstruction of the word ‘cunt’, may well have stolen the night.

It is an unseasonably balmy South Melbourne night, the lone ceiling fan sputters it’s best attempts at ventilation and we find ourselves overcome by a sultry, sweaty vibe, feeling every bit as if encased in an actual vagina. Credit to the production team for consistency of context. We’re not only hearin’ it, man, we’re in it.

On this night, the Mother Noose cabal proves itself a class act, crafting Ensler’s feminist holy grail to heartfelt climes, a credit to the directorial panache of Deutrom and passion of producers Cybulski and Jancar. Holding a weighty candle to the cause, proceeds from the shows head to beneficiary non-profit Project Respect, dedicated to the empowerment and support of women in the sex industry and a world where prostitution and female exploitation need no longer apply.

Mother Noose rocked out with their vag’s out and left us hanging for more.

If my vagina could talk, it would surely say ‘bravo ladies. bravo’.

The season is short so get in if you can. In any event check out the awesome Butterfly Club and say yo to brother follicles at the bar when you do. Tell him beard-man says hi.

2 comments:

Mother said...

Love it! Love YOU!!!
LOVE that you're writing again.
Sending this along to all the ladies as well as the Butterfly Club
xoxo
H

Vee said...

Hey look it's me! :-D ha ha ha.

Thanks for this Dool, and thank you most importantly for the support. It was a top run.

xoxo