The Maida Vale library Play Reading Group was set up in early 2010 by Mary Cunnell and Robin Lansman (osteopath in Maida Vale by day and amateur play director by night!).
The aim is to sit together and read a new play every month, and then discuss it afterwards.
The group attracts between 8 and 12 attendees at each meeting, from an ever-increasing pool of about 30 potentially interested participants. Some like to read and take a part while others just want to listen. These free sessions are held on the first Monday of each month and begin at 7.30pm, before the library closes to the public, and continue up until about 10.00pm.
We are planning to add an additional session to coach some enhanced reading out loud skills to help tell the story and act a part with more texture. This could involve recording some passages for playback to let people hear their progress after coaching. Leigh, a member of the group, has offered to run a workshop series to present a short piece on stage at a later date for those who want to go a step further. Some may even want to try out for acting at a later date in a possible new West9 Players acting group later this year – if the group can be resurrected!
In July we will read a play by a new author and library member who is keen to hear his play being read aloud for the first time. To date we have covered plays such as The Plough and the Stars by Sean O’Casey, Say Goodnight to Grandma by Colin Welland, Hysteria by Terry Johnson and Fairy Tales of New York by JP Donleavy, which Robin plans to stage across the river at the Network Theatre in 2012.
Monday 4 July – The Simple Addition of Love, by Barry O’ Shea (New writer)
Monday 1 August – The Pearl,by John Arden