Watch Out, the YODA Monologues are coming to a town near you!

by Penny Gardner

Those who are LGBT and old, young and/or disabled, often opt out of the political and activist arena. Messages from the LGBT movement in the manner of inaccessibility, neglect, and disinterest scream of the young/ old and/or disabled being undesirable as activists and colleagues. To lessen the effects of this ageism and ableism, the host sub-committees for the young, the old, and the disabled of the 2008 Creating Change Conference will be producing The YODA Monologues, (Young, Old, Disabled Action) for the national Creating Change Conference, to be held in Detroit Feb. 6-10, 2008.

The YODA Monologues is inspired by Eve Ensler's Vagina Monologues. Street theater performances of the YODA Monologues will be strategically placed and timed throughout the conference to politicize and radicalize conference attendees and others around ageism and ableism. The monologues will be scripted from stories submitted by LGBT old, young and/or disabled. The goal of these dramatic performances of LGBT experiences, is to build trust between and among all communities, and to showcase for our audiences, how the LGBT movement is diminished by actions and behaviors which can only be described as oppressive.

If you are LGBT and young, old and/or disabled please consider sharing your story of discrimination within our community based on your age and/or disability to be included in the YODA Monologues. One to three minute monologues will be scripted based on your stories. If you are a poet and would prefer to make your story into a poem, that is welcome as well.

The stories most conducive to being scripted are personal, specific, and with as much detail as possible. You may remain anonymous but please let organizers know who you are as an age, a race, a class, a disability, that we might place the monologue in context.

A workshop proposal is being written for the Arts and Activism track of Creating Change to audition, stage, rehearse and perform the YODA Monologues. If you or someone you know, has theater experience as a writer, stager, director, and are interested in volunteering to work on this project, please have them contact Penny Gardner, at marydrpenny@yahoo.com. A Web site is being constructed where you can submit your story. Visit http://www.focusmediagroup.com/monologue.

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