While Hammond’s Beatniks on Conkey has made staging “The Vagina Monologues” an annual tradition, co-director Bonnie Johnson is sure audiences who come out aren’t seeing the same show over and over with every passing year.
“Every time we do it, it’s with different women; some of the same women come out every year, but there’s always new women who come out as well,” she said. “And every year, Eve Ensler, who wrote ‘Vagina Monologues,’ sends out a new monologue or a new spotlight. There’s always changes to it, and we’re always excited by that.”
Running Saturday and Sunday at Beatniks, this year marks the sixth annual staging of “Monologues” by Beatniks. Penned by Ensler, who also creates new and updated stories with every passing year, “Monologues” is a series of dialogues recited by and exploring a myriad of issues about women throughout the globe.
First staged in 1996, theater companies and organizations throughout the globe bring “Monologues” to stages to raise awareness and funds for area organizations that aid women and families and to the Ensler-created V-Day Foundation, whose goal is to end violence toward females worldwide.
Johnson is co-directing Beatniks’ production of 2013 “Monologues” with Patti Schaffner. This year, 14 women, both locally and as far away as Chicago and Milwaukee, will be performing.
“It’s a big cast of women, and they all bring their own perspective to the monologues,” Johnson said.
As with previous years, proceeds from Beatniks “Monologues” will also go to the Hammond-based Haven House, an emergency shelter for victims of domestic violence. Beatniks will also hold an auction and button sale to raise further funds for the shelter.
“Every year it’s just a little bit different, and there’s always different things that come up at the auction as well,” Johnson said. “And there’s different ways to raise money for Haven House and the V-Day movement.”
Due to adult themes and language, “The Vagina Monologues” is recommended for mature audiences.