(PITTSFIELD, Mass.) – The traditional, global VDAY reading of works compiled by Eve Ensler will take place regionally at the Whitney Center for the Arts on Thursday, February 13, at 7pm, and Saturday, February 15, at 2pm.
The readings will come from A Memory, a Monologue, a Rant and a Prayer, a collection of monologues assembled by Eve Ensler and written by world-renowned authors and playwrights. The writings are said to be “inspired, funny, angry, heartfelt, tragic and beautiful, but above all, together, they create a true and profound portrait of this issue’s [violence against women] effect on every one of us.”
A Memory, A Monologue, A Rant and A Prayer is a call to end violence against women. Proceeds will benefit the Elizabeth Freeman Center. Tickets are $20 general admission, $15 for seniors and $5 for students. Tickets are available by credit card in advance online at www.THEWHIT.org. Tickets will also be available at the door by cash or check.
Directed by the Whit’s artistic director, Monica Bliss, the cast includes Diedre Bollinger and Brittany Nicholson, who both appeared in acclaimed one-woman shows at the Whit in 2019, as well as Jenn Smith, Rachel Branch, Colleen Jordan, Amarie Starr, Aleah Tarjick, Grace Kelley, Kas Maroney, Jess Lillie, Ann Krawat, Ted Kozlowski, and Peter Podol.
Eve Ensler’s work sparked an annual global movement to end violence against women. This movement is called VDAY, the “V” standing for Victory, Valentine and Vagina. VDAY is worldwide performances of The Vagina Monologues or A Memory, A Monologue, A Rant and A Prayer, another equally powerful collection of monologues by Eve Ensler, on or around Valentine’s Day every year, which spread awareness of violence against women and raise money to stop it.
Since its inception in 1998, VDAY campaigns have raised over $100 million for organizations working to end violence against women resulting in shelters, safe houses, anti-violence programs, self-defense training, as well as justice and equality for women around the world.
VDAY launched many other movements and programs like a program called “City of Joy” which has educated and graduated over 1300 women leaders in the Democratic Republic of Congo. VDAY mothered a movement called “One Billion Rising,” which is the largest mass action ever to call for the end of violence towards women.
The theme of VDAY 2020 is “Raise the Vibration.” VDAY 2020 rises to answer an even greater call. The call of VDAY 2020 is: “Together, through Action, Art, Connection, Imagination and Love, we RISE to free all women (cisgender, transgender, and those who hold fluid identities) from sexual, physical, racial, economic, political, socio-cultural, ideological and climate crisis violence. We RISE to end rape, battery, incest, sexual harassment, female genital mutilation, sexual slavery and trafficking, child marriage, femicide, sexual, gender and reproductive oppression, violence towards LGBTQIA+ communities. We RISE to end capitalism, colonization, racism, imperialism, climate catastrophe and war.”
Located at 42 Wendell Ave. in Pittsfield, the Whitney Center for the Arts, a presenting and producing arts center, has two world-class art galleries and presents comedies, dramas, musicals, concerts, opera nights, cabarets plus events for teens and children in an intimate performance venue.
There is marked, accessible parking and a ramp at the rear of the Whit’s building-adjacent parking lot. The performance space and accessible bathroom are both located on the first floor. The performance space has a flat floor. There will be typical theatrical lighting/sound and the public may wear scents.