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SCAN spoke to the Vagina MonoLancs Charity Director Alex Brock ahead of their annual production, which will be staged at the Nuffield Theatre on the 9th – 11th of February 2017.
What is your society about?
Our society is called Vagina MonoLancs, which is a play on the title of the play ‘Vagina Monologues’ by Eve Ensler, a collection of monologues based around a series of two hundred interviews that she did with an incredible variety of women. As a society we spend the year fundraising for a local domestic violence charity – it changes every year. We hold bake sales, we put on a fun run called Lancaster University Run Against Domestic Violence (which is scheduled for 11th March this year) but of course, our big event is a production of the show The Vagina Monologues and this is actually the fifteenth annual production of it.
What message do you want the society to convey?
I mean the title of the play has vagina in it, that is very upfront and in your face about what it is – it is about normalising our discussion around women and vaginas. We want people to talk about women’s experiences and the different experiences they have, and why that matters and why that is important, and then we are looking at it from a violence standpoint. It is an active way for people to combat domestic violence, to talk about it, and for us as a university and as women on our campus to actively show support for women who have experienced violence of any kind. So a lot of it is about building a community, as well as bringing it into the conversation, because if we are standing in Alexandra Square screaming ‘vagina’ across it, you force people to pay attention and you force people to acknowledge the existence of a society like ours.
Who can join your society?
Our cast is self-defining women and non-binary individuals only. However some of our tech crew for the actual show are really great guys, who are super supportive and feminists, and then of course men are welcome to come to the show or to take part in the LURAV charity fun run. But our cast and therefore the community that we create as a group is about women and supporting women.
What is your aim for the event?
It’s about raising funds and awareness for the charity, which this year is Women’s Community Matters in Barrow. Tickets for students are £5 and tickets for non-students are £8. All the money raised from the event, and from the society’s work throughout the year, goes directly to the Women’s Community Matters charity.