FEB. 8, 2001
CONTACT: Jane Granskog, 661/664-3117

V-Day celebrated at university

Eve Ensler's Obie Award-winning play, "The Vagina Monologues," will be performed by a combined cast of students and professors, in a one-time-only special performance on Sunday, Feb. 10, at 2 p.m. in the Dore Theatre on the California State University Bakersfield campus. Proceeds from the $10 admission price will benefit the Bakersfield Battered Women's Shelter.

"The Vagina Monologues," which enjoyed a three year sold-out run off Broadway, and most recently a two year run in Los Angeles, is a controversial, poignant, and sometimes hilarious tour of female sexuality in all its complexity and mystery. The play covers topics as varying and disturbing as molestation; the plight of Islamic women who have been victims of subjugation under the terrorist reign of the Taliban in Afghanistan; to issues as lighthearted as first date encounters.

JoLane Blaylock, president of the Women's Network at California State University Bakersfield, decided to undertake the production in an effort to chorus with hundreds of college campuses performing the piece nationwide in V-Day celebrations in an effort to stop violence against women. Blaylock, who found the idea of a student/faculty production fascinating, called for open auditions. The resultant 15 member student-directed ensemble includes four faculty members, including professors Anita DuPratt (theater), Doris Hall (criminal justice), Jane Granskog (anthropology), and Elizabeth K. Jackson (communications). Student performers include (in alphabetical order): JoLane Blaylock , Carla Brown, Emmy Darling, Mayra Jabin, Jennifer Jones, Crissy Keller, Hazel Jackson-Turner, Jasmine Whittenberg, Shiree Whittenberg, and Janet Millar.

For more information, please contact Blaylock, president of Women's Network at CSUB, 661/549-6974 (cell), 661/827-0349 (fax), or call Granskog at 661/664-3117.

What is V-Day?

V-Day is a global movement that helps anti-violence organizations throughout the world continue and expand their core work while drawing public attention to the larger fight to stop worldwide violence, including rape, battery, incest, female genital mutilation (FGM), sexual slavery against women and girls.
V-Day is also a day (on or around Valentine's Day in February), for which annual theatrical and artistic events are produced around the world to transform consciousness, raise money, and revitalize the spirit of existing anti-violence organizations. Each year, V-Day promotes a series of innovative productions, events and initiatives that are identified collectively as V-Day and the year (i.e. V-Day 2001, V-Day 2002, V-Day 2003...).

Since its launch in 1998, V-Day has awarded close to $4 million to grassroots, national and international organizations and programs that work to stop violence against women and girls. The money comes from commercial performances of "The Vagina Monologues," individuals, corporations, foundations and product sales. Awardees are chosen and funds are distributed annually, in or around the month of February. V-Day is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.

The V-Day College Campaign

For the V-Day College Campaign - the longest-running and most far-reaching of V-Day's global campaigns, colleges and universities around the world are invited to present benefit productions of "The Vagina Monologues" on their campuses on or around V-Day (Valentine's Day) to raise awareness and money to stop violence against women and girls. The proceeds from these events go back into the schools' communities to local organizations and programs already working to stop this violence. College Campaign productions are NON-commercial, NON-professional productions; they are primarily student-run, student-directed and student-performed. One of the goals of the College Campaign is to empower young people - the leaders, shapers and messengers of the future.

In the first three years of its existence, the V-Day College Campaign was presented at more than 450 schools, raised more than $1 million for local organizations, and brought the V-Day message of stopping violence against women and girls to more than 40 million people worldwide. Cornell, Leeds (England) and Friedrich Schiller (Germany) Universities and Middlebury (Ms. Ensler's alma mater), Mills and Anyajua Comprehensive (Cameroon) Colleges were among the hundreds of schools that participated in the V-Day 2001 College Campaign. CSUB, Drew, Rice and Mount Allison (Canada) Universities and Hamilton and Marist Colleges are among the 550 schools that are on board with the V-Day 2002 College Campaign this year. For the list of participating schools to date, go to http://www.vday.org/college.

Round-the-clock and up-to-the-minute information about V-Day - its mission, global campaigns, grassroots initiatives and special events - can be found at http://www.vday.org. V-Day Media can be reached via email at press@vday.org.

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