As part of V-Day, a global initiative founded by Eve Ensler, aimed at eradication violence against women, Sayoni invited EtiquetteSG to collaborate on a local amateur reading of The Vagina Monologues.
When we were approached to produce this project, we were given three words to guide us in assembling the cast: They were “women”, "activism" and "diversity". We addressed these words by inviting women who were diverse both in terms of their fields of activism, as well as in terms of ethnicity, age, profession, gender identity, gender expression and sexual orientation.
What resulted was a group 14 awesome women who work in various fields of activism that include spheres of gender equality, issues of disability, LGBT rights, animal welfare, issues of rape, sexual assault and victim-blaming, migrant worker rights, race-base issues, sex worker rights and issues pertaining to the mandatory death penalty. The work of tonight’s performers manifests in either their day-jobs, their volunteer work and/or their art-making.
Diversity and inclusivity were of critical importance to us and one of our biggest regrets was not including a sign language interpreter as part of this production. In addition, that the monologues are written from a North-American-centric point of view and originally intended for an American audience, also raised questions of cultural context, specificity and relevance. In our rendition, we included local statistics as well as regionally-specific lingo and expressions. Ultimately, issues of violence transcend race, ethnicity, class and geographic location.
Tania De Rozario & Zarina Muhammad
The Arts House