Off-Broadway jack-of-all-trades J Kyle Manzay and video queen Melyssa Ford have teamed up for a play to denounce the way women are portrayed in hip-hop videos.
The Juice was invited to a preview of "For Vixens Who've Considered Homicide When The Video Was Too Much," last night (Sept. 15) at the Rose Nagelberg Theater in the Baruch Performing Arts Center. The stage reading of the hip-hop musical directed and produced by Manzay was the first time the play had been performed in its entirety for members of the public.
Lasting just shy of two hours, "For Vixens" chronicles the plight of 16-year old Li'l Bit (played by Serena Cobb) who leaves home with nothing but a pair of spandex and a few pills of "instant FAME" to become one of the hip-hop video vixens she idolizes. Ford portrays Monica Forté, a veteran vixen retiring from "video-hoing" who's trying in vain to change the industry on her way out. BET's "106 & Park" host Terrence J steps in as video director Fresh Johnson trying to keep Forté in the business without losing sight of the fact that a girl that can booty-clap is his quickest route to a pay check.
Through musical numbers and witty dialogue, "For Vixens" doesn't hold back on anyone - from rappers to Oprah and everyone in between. Look out for a swift homage to Nicki Minaj and an unmistakable shout-out to Youtube sensation Antoine Dodson. Though humorous throughout, the play is very serious about delivering a message that, to quote the script, contrary to popular belief, video girls have feelings too.
Manzay promises the full stage version of "For Vixens Who've Considered Homicide When The Video Was Too Much" will be ready for all public viewers "very soon."