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Arts and Entertainment

Good Body, Good Show

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If there is a woman we know who could fit the word vagina into any sentence, it's Eve Ensler. Playwright, performer and activist, Ensler is probably best known for authoring the The Vagina Monologues, now a worldwide phenomenon with over 1,100 performances registered around the world this year. She is currently in town performing her most recent play, The Good Body, at the Wadsworth Theater in Brentwood. LAist was there for the red carpet festivities, of which there were several last week for various causes, and with friends in tow thoroughly enjoyed and highly recommend seeing this show.

Ensler has moved only a few inches up from where The Vagina Monologues left off, and in The Good Body tackles her obsession with her stomach. Ensler starts off by saying that every woman has their own “stomach” that one area you just hate and obsess over no matter how “gung-ho feminist left, I-can-open-the-door-for-myself-thank-you-very-much” you may be. And so she opens the door to her examinations of a worldwide trip and people she met along the way, with her stomach always in tow.

A series of vignettes where Ensler plays various characters including a teenager in fat camp, a newlywed whose body was recreated by her plastic surgeon husband, women from Africa, Italy and India and many others. Ensler's performance is moving, emotional and powerful. She goes back and forth between her own monologues and that of these characters she depicts as she takes the audience on a global tour with her, highlighting certain accomplishments of her own along the way.

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Ensler in recent years is also known for creating V-Day, a global movement to end violence again women. The V in V-Day stands for Victory, Valentine and Vagina. V-Day events happen all year around the world. Currently, V-Day has raised over $30 million dollars and educated millions about the issue. Safe houses have been funded in Kenya, Egypt, Iraq and South Dakota, and PSA campaigns launched globally. Ensler believes in what she calls her "Vagina Warriors," those who have from a grassroots level helped raise awareness about violence against women and taken a stand within their own communities against it.

Tickets range from $28 to $127 and the show only runs through Sunday, February 12th. Parking cost $7. If you haven't been on the VA Lot before in Brentwood, well that is a horse of another color. You should get to this production if only to enjoy a piece of land, undeveloped, worth millions and who knows how long it will stay that way. As for the Wadsworth Theater, not a bad seat in the house. Enjoy.

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