Vagina Monologues, Norwich

JOHN LAWSON The air of expectancy was tangible, the noise level incredible, as the Theatre Royal audience awaited the arrival of the latest three actresses prepared to lay it on the line about “down there”.

JOHN LAWSON

The air of expectancy was tangible, the noise level incredible, as the Theatre Royal audience awaited the arrival of the latest three actresses prepared to lay it on the line about “down there”.

The thin smattering of men in the full-house, first-night audience kept a low profile. Or maybe it was simply that the atmosphere of the place was helping the usually reserved British female – and all ages were represented – to open up to their fellow woman about their bodies.

Eve Ensler's questioned hundreds of females about that most feminine part of their anatomy, producing much to amuse but more importantly, much for men – and women – to ponder and from which to learn.


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This was no male-bashing exercise – I felt educated and enlightened rather than threatened or ridiculed.

Actresses have been queuing up to join the line-up of stars to feel the liberation of the performance. In Norwich they are joined by the earthy Rula Lenska. She is joined by Tilly Blackwood and Jenny Jules. They sit on stools in front of a huge sparkling V to retell the women's stories.

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Lenska's analysis of the orgasmic moan is achingly funny. But amid the light-hearted moments, there were harrowing stories of the ritual mutilation of girls in African cultures, the loss of innocence of the abused child and the eloquence of a Bosnian rape camp victim.

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