LisaRaye McCoy, Wendy Raquel Robinson and Shar Jackson are just three of the women who hit the stage in Washington, D.C. on February 6 for an all-Black production of “The Vagina Monologues.”
Washington is the first of several cities that saw this star-studded play presented by production company YYP. It’s being put on in honor of V-Day, which is a global movement to end violence against women.
Yetta Young, the CEO and Executive Producer of YYP, told us she was inspired to put on her own production of “The Vagina Monologues,” because most shows she saw were missing something. “One of the things that I noticed when I would go is that [Black women] weren’t really represented—and we weren’t there in the audience,” she told S2S.
Many famous women (including S2S publisher Jamie Foster Brown) have lent their talents to Yetta’s past production of Eve Ensler’s play in the past. This year, she asked LisaRaye to participate in the show despite the actress’ hectic schedule. LisaRaye is testifying against her ex-husband, Prime Minister Michael Misick, in a corruption case.
“I knew that people wanted to see her, they wanted to hear her story. She’s openly—just recently—been talking about her divorce and some of the things that she’s been going through, “ Yetta said.
Yetta told us that she didn’t need all the ladies in the play to be actresses because she was looking for women who would call attention to domestic violence in the Black community—a problem that is often kept quiet.
Many of the women participating in “The Vagina Monologues” this year have fallen victim to abuse, including Tamara “Taj” Johnson-George. She’ll be reading “The Little Coochie Snorcher That Could,” in which she plays a lesbian from the South.
Originally, Yetta had wanted to run “The Vagina Monologues” and “The Johnson Chronicles” as complimentary pieces on consecutive nights. “The Johnson Chronicles,” created by Peter J. Harris, is kind of like ‘The Vagina Monologues” for men. It’s a “body memoir” which talks about sex, relationships and violence from man’s perspective.
Unfortunately, due to some unspecified logistical problems, “The Johnson Chronicles” has been postponed. However, the men who would have taken to the stage this weekend will still come out to support the ladies. There is no word on when they will get to go on.
For more information on YYP’s production of “The Vagina Monologues” visit VDayDC.com.
Sherri Shepherd Photos by Julie Napear /courtesy YYP
Taj Johnson George photo by Kenneth Cummings /courtesy YYP