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‘We are not promoting porn’

This weekend, the Comedy Store will play host to The Vagina Monologues, the worldwide phenomenon written by Eve Enlser that has tried to address the issue of female sexual abuse.

art and culture Updated: Aug 27, 2010 12:47 IST
Rochelle Pinto

This weekend, the Comedy Store will play host to The Vagina Monologues, the worldwide phenomenon written by Eve Enlser that has tried to address the issue of female sexual abuse.

Director Mahabanoo Mody – Kotwal says the oddball pick of venue was because other major theatres have banned them from showcasing there.

Banned
“National Theatre of Performing Arts (NCPA), St. Andrew’s auditorium, Bandra and even Sophia Bhabha Hall have banned us from performing there. I was told that the Sophia College girls were anxious to perform the play themselves. The nuns agreed to allow it but the trustees said no,” reveals Kotwal.

“We are not propagating pornography, this deals with the issues of abuse. So if you are not going to support a play which condemns abuse, does that mean you are for it?”

Despite being shunted out of the city’s major theatres, Kotwal insists that it is not a rejection of the play by Mumbai’s audiences.

“I have no idea why these places have stopped us from performing, because I have a censor certificate without any cuts and even politicians from all parties have been in the audience at some point or the other. I haven’t even had more than three negative comments in the 230-plus shows we’re staged,” she says.

As for the Comedy Store reception, she expects the same chaotic response that all her performances have generated.

“We’ve had couples coming backstage to cut their wedding anniversary cakes with us, we’ve had grandfathers insisting on bringing their daughters and grand-daughters to the venue.”

She insists that the play has been able to fulfill people’s expectations, which is why they’ve been able to keep going. “In all these months, people have been able to find whatever they came looking for. It’s a many-layered subject, below the ‘ha ha’ you can see the tragedy of the situation.”