Emotional Creature - The Secret Life of Girls Around the World

Samoa House TAP Studio, Auckland

05/04/2017 - 08/04/2017

Production Details

“Don’t tell me not to cry. To calm it down, not to be so extreme, to be reasonable… You don’t tell the Atlantic Ocean to behave. This is not extreme… I AM AN EMOTIONAL CREATURE.”

The New Zealand premiere of EMOTIONAL CREATURE: The Secret Life of Girls Around the World, the new play from Eve Ensler, activist, feminist and Tony award-winning playwright of The Vagina Monologues. From the heart-achingly familiar to the skin-tingling new, stories from girls all over the world are woven together for a raw, intimate look into the universal and unique conundrum of being a girl today.

This play’s subject matter is heartbreakingly relevant right now, as the struggle for full gender equality in New Zealand and around the world continues. Director and UNITEC graduate, Forrest Denize, says “After performing a monologue from Emotional Creature for an assignment last year, I couldn’t get the play out of my head. With the 2016 U.S. election, the state of the environment, the refugee crisis and so much more, the voices and stories of the girls within this play have never been more relevant and urgent. I knew that 2017 was the year that this play needed to be heard.” The Others Club production of EMOTIONAL CREATURE is a work specifically for, about and involving young women, giving agency and inspiration to the girl in all of us.

Book through iTICKET: http://bit.ly/2noVqiV

This electric cast of six diverse young women features Sarah Walden, Genevieve Kent,  Marianne Infante, Carla Newton, Kiri-Rose Kendall and Mai Nguyen.

Theatre , Spoken word , Performance Poetry ,

For teenage daughters – and sons

Review by Candice Lewis 06th Apr 2017

Samoa House is a beautiful space in which Producer Todd Waters and director Forrest Denize bring Eve Ensler’s Emotional Creature to life. Ensler is best known for writing The Vagina Monologues.

The women performing are diverse, vibrant and compelling as they take on a variety of roles representing young women around the world. The struggle for acceptance, safety and respect is explored as each character directly addresses the audience, breaking down the ‘fourth wall’ that usually separates us.

The seating makes it hard to see the actors when they were sitting or lying on the ground, so get there early and sit in the front.

There is a little bit of song and dance which resembles turning on an acapella episode of the television show Glee. Carla Newton is the musical director and has a rich, strong voice that shines beautifully during her solo.  

Genevieve Kent portrays a high school student trying to fit in with the mean girls and rejecting someone for not being cool in order to do so. Her concerns may seem trivial when later compared with another of her roles as a child who is raped and later sold into sex slavery. This difference does not trivialize the materially privileged teenager’s experience; it shows that her pain and fear of not fitting in or being lovable is valid. It doesn’t empower anyone to compare a teenager wearing the ‘wrong shoes’ to a teenager sold into sex slavery.

Kiri-Rose Kendall emanates indestructible majesty when taking on the weight of her roles; fierce pride and survival are beautifully conveyed, the poetry of the script rolls off her tongue. Sarah Walden may be playing the part of a girl, yet a woman is always present, and Mai Nguyen is enchanting as she is solemn when describing factory work making Barbie doll heads.

Marianne Infante is perfectly cast as a girl who misses ‘her funny nose’ after her parents insist on plastic surgery. She may now be ‘pretty’ but she preferred to be funny. Hearing a young woman say that she has to choose between the two, even now, highlights how far we have to come.

This is a show to take your daughter (and son) to if they have hit teenage years; it opens up discussions about western society’s obsession with being thin, the social media persona, bullying and rape. The weight of these stories is balanced with a sprinkling of humour and the sometimes surprising burst of song and dance.


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