Posted: 29 March 2009 at 8:43am | IP Logged
'Men have a better relationship with their genitals'
...says Imran Khan, who is all set to fork his tongue and mesmerise the audience in the 200th show of celebrated play, The Vagina Monologues. Manish Gaekwad caught up with the reticent actor before his stage debut
Tight lipped about his role in The Vagina Monologues, Imran Khan comes across as a bit of a cipher when I try to coax out what exactly he is going to read for his one time appearance on The Vagina Monologues show scheduled to be held at the National Centre for Performing Arts tomorrow. "Are you reprising Mallika Sherawat's skit, My Short Skirt for your stage debut in the VM series?" He nods, "Initially, that was the part, but Mahabanoo (Mody Kotwal) came up with some new stuff and I'm reading two short pieces."
"I have seen VM prior to my association with it. My friends have been part of the acting troupe. So, when the opportunity arrived, it was a privilege to lend my voice to something I strongly believe in, and stretch myself as an actor," he said, lounging on a couch at his Pali Hill bungalow.
The Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Naa actor is quite serious about this special performance that's been organised to raise awareness, funds and stop violence against women and girls. Actor-director Farhan Akhtar and sister Zoya also feature in this special 200th show.
In contrast to how women find the act of speaking about their vagina liberating, I ask if he thinks that stands true for men too, especially since they are so vocal about their private parts in public. "I think men have a better relationship with their genitals. Women have been oppressed for far too long, unable to speak up about various forms of injustice, whether rape, mutilation or slavery. Through The Vagina Monologues, they get a platform to use the vagina as a prism to reflect society's ills."
That coming from wide-eyed Imran, after the initial hiccup of a long silence, when my first question to him was, "What is the first image that crops up in your mind when I say Vagina?", and he said nothing. It came slow, but it came processed. "Vagina!" And we thought only Archimedes had cracked it when he stumbled on his "Eureka!"
What is The Vagina Monologues?
Eve Ensler's multi-award winning play, The Vagina Monologues includes a bunch of monologues read by women, and deals with the emancipation of women. Every monologue is connected through the vagina, and speaks of sex, love, rape, menstruation, mutilation, masturbation, birth, orgasm, or simply as a physical aspect of the body. A recurring motif throughout the piece is the vagina as a tool of female empowerment, and the ultimate embodiment of individuality.