Performance to raise funds for Gonzalez’s child

Katrina Cameron

Auditions for City College’s presentation of “The Vagina Monologues: The V-Day Edition” occurred Dec. 8 and 9.

The production, which raises awareness of violence against women, will be held Feb. 18 and 19 in the Saville Theatre.

Ninety percent of the proceeds of the performances will be donated to Diana Gonzalez’s daughter Crystal’s scholarship fund.

According to the production’s website, Gonzalez – who was killed at City College on Oct. 12 – was a V-Day activist and “The Vagina Monologues” cast member.

V-Day is a worldwide activist movement to end violence against women. The events increase awareness and raise money for the cause. V-Day campaigns occur on college campuses and are organized by local volunteers and college students.

“When we lost Diana Gonzalez as a victim of domestic violence, I contacted the national organization and said we wanted to give the money to her daughter’s scholarship fund,” V-Day director and City College theater professor Katherine Rodda said.

Eve Ensler, author of the “Vagina Monologues,” has made the rights of the play available for production during “V-season,” February through April.

“They don’t have to pay to produce, which is unusual,” said Rodda. “The stipulation is that all the money that you make has to go to a charitable organization that prevents and fights against violence towards women.”

While 90 percent of the proceeds will go to the Gonzalez fund, the remaining 10 percent will be donated to V-Day’s Spotlight Campaign, which in 2011 will focus on the women and girls of Haiti.

The funds raised through the Spotlight Campaign will be used to support a campaign in Haiti that will address sexual violence through art, advocacy, safe shelter and legal services.

“I really appreciate the cause,” said Marilyn Harvey, City College director of development and alumni relations and “Vagina Monologues” auditions attendee.

More than 40 City College students and staff members participated in the auditions, in which participants were required to perform one of three pieces.

“I haven’t done a play in a while,” said Aisha Salinas, cosmetology and business major. “I miss being on stage. All my friends told me I had to be in V-Day.”

In March, City College’s last V-Day production raised almost $4,500 with only one performance. Rodda predicts the upcoming production will raise at least twice as much money.