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A little late-night ladyflower power

Listen to everything you wanted to know about vaginas — plus some — have a few drinks, then hit the town.

That's what promoters of the American Stage Theatre Co. hope guests will do at its After Hours Series production of The Vagina Monologues.

The St. Petersburg theater company is starting the series to help boost revenue while attracting a younger audience that prefers edgy, late-night entertainment.

"We want this to be a laid-back, fun atmosphere,'' said marketing director Andy Orrell.

Theatergoers can eat and drink during the shows, normally a no-no at American Stage. Specialty bar drinks, such as Sex on the Beach, will play on the sensual, vaginal theme. Admission to the 142-seat theater is whatever you can pay.

Vagina Monologues opens Tuesday and runs through Oct. 12. Shows start at 10:30 p.m. after the mainstage production of By the Waters of Babylon. Tuesday and Sunday matinees start at 7.

The show stars Bonnie Agan, Brandii Edwards, Magali Naas and Jessica Alexander. Local media celebrities, including Lynne Austin, the original Hooters girl and co-host of The SportsChix on WQYK-AM 1010, and Jen Holloway, a newscaster for BayNews 9, will perform monologues during every show.

The play is made up of short monologues pertaining to a woman's vagina, from pet names for private parts to stories about discovering "down there.'' Eve Ensler wrote the play in 1996 based on interviews with 200 women about sex, relationships and violence against women. Part of the proceeds will benefit the local YWCA.

American Stage plans to continues its After Hours Series with productions of Reefer Madness and David Sedaris' Santaland Diaries.

"We've always strived to be a theater of the people,'' Orrell said. "We have been getting younger and younger people every year, but we wanted to do something that specifically spoke to the younger generation.''

The company hopes increased concession sales and ticket donations help offset recent state and local budget cuts. Vagina Monologues, which has no specific costumes or set, will cost significantly less than a mainstage production.

The Vagina Monologues

The play opens Tuesday and runs through Oct. 12 at American Stage, 211 Third St. S in St. Petersburg. 10:30 p.m. Wednesdays through Saturdays, and 7 p.m. Tuesdays and Sundays. Pay as you can. (727) 823-7529,

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A little late-night ladyflower power 09/18/08 [Last modified: Thursday, September 18, 2008 7:44pm]
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