Hi! I'm Monica, a writer and playwright. I wrote a play inspired by Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood. The show debuted in Durham, North Carolina, to sold-out houses and rave reviews. After every performance, people came up to me and said:
“This play needs to be out there. Now.”
Why now? Because in the last two years, women’s health services--especially Planned Parenthood--have faced and continue to face a surge of unprecedented legislative attacks. Given this, we need to give cultural answers as well as political ones. My play is about the world that is possible when young women have sovereignty over their bodies, and the reality they face when they don’t.
Independent productions of the play are underway in Austin, Berkeley, and Portland. Meanwhile, under the name The Order of St. Margaret Sanger, my creative partner Jaki Bradley and I were accepted to the New York International Fringe Festival, which attracts an audience of 75,000. The extraordinary musician Amanda Palmer gave us permission to use her music in the production. Now we go up in five weeks, and we need your help to produce it.
Jaki and I are working for free and absorbing the costs of rent in the city, but producing at the Fringe still requires a big chunk of change to pay for publicity, rehearsal space, stipends, and other expenses. See below for a full breakdown.
Here is our incredible cast and creative team:
Theresa. Danielle Beckmann.
Anne. Maggie Raymond.
Joan. C.C. Kellogg.
Lucy. Emma Meltzer.
Director. Jaki Bradley.
Playwright. Monica Byrne.
Producer. Brandon Smithey.
Stage Manager. Kate Sylvester.
Publicist. Lanie Zipoy.
Fundraiser. Sarah Dell’Orto.
Choreographers. Jeff and Ricky Kuperman.
Designer. Rebecca Buck.
Here are direct links to buy tickets:
And here is our budget:
*Any excess funds will first be used to pay our cast and crew more per person in addition to the stipends listed above, up to $150 each, after which the director and playwright will receive payment at the same maximum amount ($254), after which future productions of What Every Girl Should Know will be funded, including the forthcoming productions in Berkeley, Portland and Austin, and a possible international production at the Edinburgh Fringe.
Thank you for reading! And if you're interested in the art-related perks, see below for our Etsy partners' work, and examples of my work.
Margaret Sanger cuff bracelet by Sarah Wood Jewelry:
Scapular by Heather St. Hilaire (image of Margaret Sanger):
Original Poster Art for What Every Girl Should Know:
Art for the FringeNYC program ad:
Sign for PACZ Tours, San Ignacio, Belize:
O is for Owl, Illuminated Letter Series:
H is for Henna, Illuminated Letter Series:
E is for Estrellas, Illuminated Letter Series:
(Last three photos by Allie Mullin.)