RDS7: A virgin moment

Posted on October 7, 2014 by Basement

The confession that one of the first songs that I can remember hearing is “Like A Virgin,” will either have you consider my mom to be either really cool or rather inappropriate. I happen to appreciate her still existent obsession with Madonna and the fact that I knew most of the words to that particular song way back when I was three years old, and that we used to dance around the house as it played. When I was asked to chat with Amanda Tito and get the scoop on the play of the same title, which is currently running at The Basement Theatre, I was intrigued to find out what exactly it is all about.

Dawn Glover: I’ve read the blurb on The Basement page, but can you tell me a little more about what this play is about? Is it a play in a traditional sense? Is it more along the lines of a one-woman show? Are there characters…?

Amanda Tito: The play is a devised piece that is more along the lines of a workshopped set of ideas. There are four of us in the work and each of us has brought forward a true story from our own experiences plus a couple of new ones. Not just sex but love and growing up in general.

There are multiple characters played by each of the actors with each of us aiding our fellow actors. I decided to try something different in this work, testing out some ideas of play. I think because of my own opinion on the ideas surrounding virginity and its status lead me in a sillier means of exploration whilst still holding true to my ‘Lost it’ story.

DG: Do you think virginity is still a conversation, outside of religious groups, in the modern world?

AT: In my eyes the idea of virginity is an out-dated, completely ridiculous idea, a concept that is not helpful for either men or women. To me it is a cliché and to be honest some of the ideas surrounding virginity are a bit of a joke, I do however understand it is still of importance to some.

I guess the interesting part of ‘virginity’ for me is not in the idea of being a virgin but the moment you have to deal with having sex or learning of intimacy for the first time. Not so much the sacredness of the ‘virgin’. There will always be a time when you have never done something and then a time when you have done something for the first time.

I guess why the issue or topic of virginity is a valid base for a show is it is a shared human experience, a milestone that we all go through. Hopefully the way we present the work is in a very relatable and real life kind of way. Minus maybe some dancing cats

DG: What inspired the creation this piece?

AT: The inspiration came from two of the actors in the piece, Courtney Abbot and Toafia Pelesasa. Originally a two hander but they invited me and Caleb Wright to join in. We got together, had a potluck and shared some stories, some funny, some embarrassing, some very normal and some sad.

Like A Virgin is running for two more evenings at The Basement Theatre. The show starts at 7:30pm.

-DG

Row D Seat 7 is a blog written by Dawn Glover. Dawn studied acting at Purdue University (USA) earning her Masters of Fine Arts in Performance. She has worked professionally as an actor and singer throughout The States and made Auckland her new home almost two years ago. She is one of the founders of Navi Collaborative and is actively interested in theatre for social change, experimental works, and performance art.