Monday, February 23, 2009

It's not over there...

Well, technically, the show is done. We had our closing night last weekend, but we had two performances at Women's Jail #9 in San Francisco last week, as our final performances, and what an AMAZING experience! They were, hands down, the best audiences we had. I am not saying that the audiences at USF weren't great, but you really felt that these women soaked in every word. Even though you expected them to be jaded and cut-off, they absorbed everything, and were affected by every monologue. They laughed, they were silenced, and at times, they were overwhelmed and had to leave. Statistically, more of these women have had the same circumstances and hardships as the women in the monologues, and you could feel the weight these monologues carried for that reason. During Coochi Snorcher, during the hardest memory, a woman, immediately stood up, said "Gotta go" and rushed off. There was no apology necessary, no explanation. We knew, and we wished we could have helped somehow. Maybe the show did. 

We had a talk-back afterwards, and the women asked us questions. The most common were: "How can I get involved?" and "Where can I get one of those shirts?" We put our super sexy logo on a t-shirt and didn't know how to respond, since these women don't get to wear anything but orange. We were touched, though. Some had seen the show before, whether they were in a year ago and saw last year's cast, or they saw it before they were arrested, but most had not seen the show, and they're responses were so honest, and so rewarding.

It was a beautiful experience. Something I was told about by past casts, and something I will tell future casts and friends. There is nothing like it. And what strikes me most is that I am waking up and falling asleep, thinking about how to help those women. How to give them more theater, how to get them to perform this show, and, selfishly, how to get that feeling back. I hope apathy doesn't creep in, I hope this fire stays, but with every v-day, there is a wave of action, and then the tide recedes. 

I'm going to fight the tide.

Much much much vagina love,

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