Healing as Resistance: Stories of Radical Self-Love
Our show enables us to tell stories; It is heartbreaking that we have to carry the infinite weight of these stories on our backs, our heads, and our hearts, but today, our stories will not be deconstructed into snippets of convenience for global consumption. But rather, tonight, we will tell you our stories on our terms.
As a forum for these voices, we understand that storytelling is form of healing and that as womxn and non-binary folks, being heard is a radical form of protest within itself. Bringing these marginalized voices to the forefront is a priority.
Healing as Resistance is more important now than ever as so many folks continue to be denied access to womxnhood, this movement, and the ability to tell their own story.
We want to recognize that the narratives we tell-- the narratives describing what it means to be a womxn, what it means to fight for equality, equity, and human rights-- are often not inclusive and contribute to the erasure of certain histories. Tonight we are attempting to reclaim our own stories.
Despite our best efforts, many voices continue to be forgotten or lost in translation. We recognize that while we cannot represent every story on this stage tonight, we tried to redefine what The Vagina Monologues means, and whose narratives it uplifts.
About V-Day and V-Day at UCB
Every fall, we assemble a cast and crew to form a community for strong, motivated students who have, do, or will identify as a womxn. This community becomes a space for empowerment, education, and activism.
Through alliances with other student groups and the support of UC Berkeley's Gender Equity Resource Center, we strive to make this a learning experience, not only for those part of the production, but for all of those on campus.
Every spring, as part of the culmination of our community and movement building, we bring our awareness and strength to the public through benefit performances of The Vagina Monologues. These shows raise money and awareness to stop violence against womxn.
V-Day at UC Berkeley is the largest production of The Vagina Monologues in the United States.
V-Day at UC Berkeley Mission Statement
V-Day is an organized response against violence toward all womxn, trans people, and non binary folks.
V-Day is a vision: We see a world where all womxn, trans* people, and non binary folks live safely and freely.
V-Day is a demand: Rape, incest, battery, genital mutilation and sexual slavery must end now.
V-Day is a spirit: We believe all womxn, trans people, and non binary folks should spend their lives creating and thriving rather than surviving or recovering from terrible atrocities.
V-Day is a catalyst: By raising money and consciousness, it will unify and strengthen existing anti-violence efforts. Triggering far-reaching awareness, it will lay the groundwork for new educational, protective, and legislative endeavors throughout the world.
V-Day is a process: We will work as long as it takes. We will not stop until the violence stops.
V-Day is a day. We proclaim Valentine’s Day as the date to celebrate womxn and the end of violence.
V-Day is a fierce, wild, unstoppable movement and community.
Beautiful Daughters: Screening and Panel
The Vagina Monologues, while a powerful tool for raising awareness and money to end gendered violence, has a long history of transmisogyny. In an attempt to think more critically about this history, V-Day will be hosting a follow up event to our production this year. We will be screening Beautiful Daughters, a documentary following the first all trans production of The Vagina Monologues, followed by a panel of powerful trans folks in the bay area community. We hope to both problematize The Vagina Monologues as a platform for activism while also uplifting trans-femme narratives. Please join us for this night of critical discussion and reflection on February 16th in The Multicultural Community Center at 6:30 pm. Panelists include Juniper Xiomara Cordova-Goff and Anna Lauren Hoffmann. Moderated by Marisa Boyce.
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Narrator - Erin McQueen
Introduction - Sheen Kachen, Rudy Brandt, Elizabeth Adair-Wells
Hair - Adiba Khan
Vagina Happy Fact - Catherine Strauss
Because He Liked to Look at It - Janani Hariharan
*Vagina Sad Fact - Catherine Strauss
I Was 12; My Mother Slapped Me - Julianne Kennedy, Nikita Gourishetty, Julia Kulewicz
My Angry Vagina - Suma Thati
*Closeted Trans - JJ Lamas
Reclaiming Cunt - Ilexis Chu-Jacoby
*Amot: Shame - Sareen Habeshian, Vanuhi Vartanian
They Beat The Girl Out of Me… Or So They Tried - Lee-Or Scarlat, Ilexis Chu-Jacoby, Kristina Echevarria
My Vagina Was My Village - Gaby Ostrove
I Was There In The Room - Maddy Aragon
Juarez - Angélica Vargas
The Woman Who Loved to Make Vaginas Happy - Rizza Estacio
*Spotlight: My Revolution - Ali Henry
*: Original Monologues; written and performed by 3 members of this year’s cast.
Production Team 2017
Aslesha Kumar- Aslesha Kumar is a third year desi femme from Amsterdam studying political economy. She enjoys curating all forms of art including music, film, and memes.
Eliza Bell McCullough- Second year whose favorite things include oatmeal, fairies, swimming in lakes, and her mother. She is in awe of the people in this production and wants to dedicate this show to her little sister whose softness is its own kind of strength.
Julia Kulewicz- Hi! Thank you so much for coming to see the show, and for your support. I encourage you to watch the following performance with a critical lens, and question how these monologues both uplift and harm narratives and histories. I hope that these monologues will spark conversations, awareness, and movements beyond just this auditorium.
Victoria Silva- Vikki is a third year Xicanx who likes poetry and has no time for white supremacy or people who don’t appreciate pineapple on pizza.
Cast and Crew Bios
Adiba Khan- She is a third year majoring in Public Health & Legal Studies. She hopes to become a lawyer because she is passionate about access to reproductive healthcare in the U.S and globally. She is also passionate about voter rights. Her favorite coffee shop is Gray Owl Coffee. She is a Bangladeshi-American from Norman, Oklahoma.
Ali Henry- Ali Henry is a graduating senior studying sociology and education. She joined the Vagina Monologues in order to spread awareness of sexual violence by reclaiming her story. She believes that this show can be powerful form of healing and resistance and is so jazzed to share her experiences with everyone! She also joined so she can say the word vagina without getting weird about it.
Alya Lamba- My name is Alya and I’m from the wonderful city of Bombay, India. I love horror movies, my family and feminism. I joined this community looking for people who could teach me about different experiences, and I found that and so much more. Thank you for your support, I hope you enjoy this as much as I have!
Angelica Vargas- A fourth year psychology major at Cal. She was raised in the heart of the California Central Valley. Seagulls and turtles are her favorite animals and she enjoys watching movies for fun.
Anissa Silva- “Con ganas,” with effort, is what my mother has instilled in me. I am a proud womxn of color who has had the privilege of being raised surrounded by intelligent and resilient womxn. These womxn have taught me to embrace who I am in my entirety and to never settle for less in anything or anyone.
Catherine Strauss- I grew up in a conservative Asian household, and as a kid, was marinated in the notion that women shouldn’t voice their opinions, shouldn’t have sexual agency, and are defined in the eyes of men. After years of fighting problematic Asian values, I am finally now able to fully liberate myself from those oppressive beliefs. Being part of the Vagina Monologues helped me with the transition, and that’s definitely an understatement.
Dana Moskowitz- A third-year Society and Environment major who is passionate about mountains and women. In her free time she enjoys reading, listening to feminist music, and eating Trader Joe's coffee ice cream.
Elizabeth Adair Wells- A fourth year studying Political Science with a focus on Reproductive Justice. She is passionate about breaking down the stigma surrounding sex, and plans to pursue a career in reproductive and sexual health care policy following graduation. In her spare time, Elizabeth Adair likes working to dismantle the patriarchy, making pasta, and watching cat videos.
Erin McQueen- Erin is a junior transfer student at UC Berkeley, majoring in Anthropology and Gender and Women's Studies. Erin is a singer/songwriter, musician, and avid reader, who enjoys spending her free time performing and writing. She is incredibly excited to be a part of this year's performance of The Vagina Monologues, and is beyond grateful for the beautiful community it has provided her.
Gaby Ostrove- A first year who plans on majoring in astrophysics. She enjoys musicals, British television, and being Jewish. She is very grateful to have been a part of telling these inspiring stories!
Ilexis Chu-Jacoby- I am a Taiwanese, Salvadorian, German-Jewish, Baha’i feminist, artist, musician, lover, plant caretaker, first generation college student, and soil chemistry researcher. It is an essential part of my work as a queer woman of color in science to integrate a critical, intersectional framework of race and gender in my personal and scientific lens, in my methods as an undergraduate researcher, and beyond.
Isabella Camacho-Craft- She is a senior Peace and Conflict Studies major. She really cares about bread, tap dancing, manatees, and dismantling imperialist, white supremacist, capitalist hetero-patriarchies.
Janani Hariharan- I'm a junior from Bombay, India, studying Business Administration and English. I love most things in the world, except snakes, flowers and wearing pants.
Thank you for supporting us — I hope this show moves you as much as it did me!
Jesi Liu- Jesi is currently a junior studying Rhetoric and Gender and Women's Studies. She loves Hall and Oates (Oates more than Hall) and cannot stand the taste of cilantro. She is thankful for all the empowering people in her life.
Jess Yao- Gender non-conforming, owns a guinea pig, likes taking portraits, sings sometimes, bad at coding.
JJ Lamas- My name is JJ Lamas and I identify as a transfer student who recently arrived to UC Berkeley. I'm 25 years old, QTPOC, first generation, and my life has taken me through some places that have shaped me into the person I am today. There is beauty behind the struggle and growth behind the pain. For all of us, the adversities we endure may not all be the same. Every single human being in this world is facing some sort of trouble, but the connections we make with one another can bring us together again. Do not change yourself for anyone and never fear the change. For the change makes our hearts beat endlessly, and the strength takes our journey into a new lane.
Julianne Kennedy- I am a fourth year student from North Carolina, and studying Peace and Conflict Studies. Upon returning from a semester abroad in Prague, I completed my conflict resolution and mediation certification. I feel kindness is a particularly underrated form of strength, love dancing- though I specifically practice pole dance, and think ice cream is one of the greatest foods on the planet.
Kristina Echevarria- Participating in The Vagina Monologues has been an amazing experience for me. It is very empowering to be able to share so many different narratives of womanhood with the Berkeley community. Performing "They Beat the Girl out of My Boy" has been a powerful and eye opening experience for me and I am so happy to have been a part of it.
Leah Jaffe- She is a sophomore studying Development Studies and Gender and Women's studies and loves running outdoors in Berkeley. She first saw the Vagina Monologues performed in high school by her woke ass female teachers and is so excited and honored to be a part of this production and movement.
Lee-Or Scarlet- She is a second-year student pursuing a double major in Public Health and Gender and Women's Studies. She comes from a wonderful Israeli home and loves most to be with her family. She has a passion for singing, poetry, nature, dogs, and most of all, intersectional feminism.
Maddy Aragon- I hope to weaponize my privilege to fight for all womxn-identified folks. This community is so full of love and support, but is simultaneously still critical of this production that has been historically exclusionary. Thank y’all for being “woke.” Let’s find resistance in our healing. It’s our time.
Nikita Gourishetty- She is currently a junior, studying MCB and Psychology. She hopes to continue working in women's advocacy and health in the future. At any given point, she is most likely eating cake in bed.
Rizza Estacio- She is a second year studying Molecular Cell Biology and English Literature. She is super excited to be performing in the Vagina Monologues for the second time in her existence, and is so thankful to the beautiful cast and crew who made this production possible. She hopes in this production you find your joy, pain, and pleasure ;)
Roya Aghavali- She is currently a junior studying Anthropology, hoping to emphasize in the Middle East. She loves cooking, especially cooking and eating Persian food, with her amazing roommates. She loves her mom, her family and friends and wants to thank her Vagina Monologue family for making such a significant impact on her life.
Rudy Brandt- A first year forging her undeclared path at UC Berkeley. She has lived and grown up in Berkeley for the past eleven years and is honored to be able to continue her education in such a diverse, accepting and ever-changing city and University. She considers herself very blessed to have been a part of The Vagina Monologues this year and she hopes that you are both inspired and empowered by the show!
Sanaz Fakhimi- She is a third year student at UC Berkeley studying Business Administration. She is learning to love her softness, sexuality and femininity, while embracing her sharp tongue and heritage. She loves small dogs, eccentric clothing, Iranian films, and her wonderful friends, family and boyfriend.
Sareen Habeshian- She is a senior studying Media Studies and Middle Eastern Studies. She is writer, reader, runner, and food enthusiast!
Sheen Kachen- If encountered in the street, Sheen will likely be listening to Fresh Air, tearing up to the sound of Terry Gross’s soothing voice. A political economy major, Sheen hopes to integrate her love of policy and global affairs with her passion for vaginas. Also important to notes is Sheen’s passion for unwarranted singing accompanied by equally as unwarranted guitar playing.
Sonny Carlton- I'm Sonny, they/them. I'm a first year BioE major. I enjoy food, Netflix, and Quidditch.
Sophia Gaynes- A first year who plans on majoring in Physics. She loves crafting, Grey’s Anatomy, cooking and Judaism. She is so honored to have worked with such an inspiring and powerful community.
Suma Thati- My name is Suma, and I’m a freshman and Media Studies major here at Berkeley. I am a serial reader, writer and TV show watcher. Theatre has been a love of mine for as long as I can remember, and I feel incredibly blessed to have been given the opportunity to use it further a cause I feel so passionately about. I hope you enjoy the show as much as I have enjoyed being a part of its creation!
Vanuhi Vartanian- She is a proud Armenian feminist who loves to dance, laugh... and smash the patriarchy. When she's not doing research on the Soviet Union, she dedicates extra time to helping school children in Armenian villages by coordinating and fundraising for scholarships and reconstruction projects. Սիրում եմ ձեզ, Հայեր!!! <3
We would like to thank the following organizations and individuals, for their contributions towards this production and the movement.
The Gender Equity Resource Center staff for their unfailing guidance and support:
ASUC & LEAD Center staff for student group support:
Meditation Workshop: Axenya Kachen
Healing through Writing workshop: Shivani Narang
Sex and Sexuality Workshop: Nanticha Lutt
Fantasy T-Shirts for t-shirts and merchandise
Good Vibrations for raffle donations
Yudi Sun for all artwork and design
Radhalila Reinhofer for artwork installation
V-Day at UC Berkeley is a program of the Gender Equity Resource Center and an ASUC sponsored student group. V-Day is a global movement to end violence against women and girls through benefit productions of Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues and other artistic works. Since 2001, the V-Day Production Team (GenEq Interns) organize this benefit performance through the V-Day College Campaign. Over the years, the V-Day cast, crew and production team have raised over $100,000 for local non-profits.
Vagina Monologues 2016
This Fall 2015, V-Day at UC Berkeley will be holding auditions for the cast and crew for the 2015-2016 benefit production of Eve Enslers’s “The Vagina Monologues!”. Auditions are open to UC Berkeley undergraduate and graduate students, faculty and staff who have ever, will ever, or currently identify as a woman. No past acting or crew experience is required. If you are interested, we recommend you attend one of our information sessions to learn more.
If you have any questions, please contact the VDay Prod Team via e-mail vagmonsUCB@gmail.com or attend one of the info sessions. Info Sessions: TBA (join our Facebook Group to get the latest information on Info Sessions)
THE VAGINA MONOLOGUES
Redefining. Reframing. Reclaiming.
Feb 11, 12, & 13, 2016
7pm - Wheeler Auditorium
$10 General Admission
$12 online on Eventbrite
V-Day at UC Berkeley is proud to bring you the annual production of the Vagina Monologues! Get your tickets early as we tend to sell out!
Look for The VDay at UC Berkeley table on Upper Sproul from about 10am-3pm Monday-Friday only. If the weather conditions are poor, we will table inside GenEq. Cash Only please at the table.
This event is Wheelchair Accessible. For disability-related accommodations, please go to access.berkeley.edu. Questions: email@example.com