Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

A Censured Title Offers Play a Boost; It's Meant National Publicity for 'The Vagina Monologues.'

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

A Censured Title Offers Play a Boost; It's Meant National Publicity for 'The Vagina Monologues.'

Article excerpt

Byline: DREW DIXON

ATLANTIC BEACH - A small theater hosting a production of The Vagina Monologues got a huge spotlight of national attention in the past week after the marquee promo was temporarily censored, and that could translate into sold-out shows.

National attention focused on the play after the management at the Atlantic Theatres, 751 Atlantic Blvd., last week changed the marquee outside the theater promoting the play to "Hoohaa Monologues."

The theater's general manager, Tom Fallon, said he made the change after a woman driving by the marquee complained that she found the title offensive.

Following widespread media attention, including coverage on Cable News Network and a joke by late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel, Fallon switched the marquee back to The Vagina Monologues on Thursday.

Students at the Florida School of Law who are putting on the performance for a fundraiser, complained the name change was a case of censorship.

"You can't really argue with the publicity," said Laura Crolla, a law school student co-director of the play, who acknowledged the name change drew intense attention to the production. "But it's [contradictory to] the entire purpose of The Vagina Monologues itself.

"I appreciate the publicity, but I would have rather not have had to face this censorship from the beginning," Crolla said.

The Vagina Monologues, which has been a pop culture hit for several years, is based on performers in character explaining challenges facing women.

The Vagina Monologues will be performed at The Atlantic Theatres at 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

The woman who complained to Fallon worried she'd have to explain what the word vagina means to a young girl.

Crolla said that's what's so disturbing about the decision to temporarily change the marquee.

"The very essence of a woman is the vagina," Crolla said. "The fact that it was a little girl asking a woman; if she's old enough to read it, I'm pretty sure she's old enough to understand what it is. It's not like we put anything up there that was in any way explicit.

"It was a totally politically correct and anatomically correct word," Crolla said. …

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