I had the best time last Saturday.
A theater friend (thank you David Leon!) hosted a play reading party!
Got to see some old friends and meet some new folks and talk a little theater gossip.
And we read through two plays – neither of which I was familiar with.
The first was Eat the Runt by Avery Crozier.
And then we did Beyond Therapy by Christopher Durang.
Two very interesting and funny plays.
It is a testament to the talents of everyone there, that the “cold read” of both plays was really good and so funny. We each just volunteered for the role we wanted to read and let the cards fall where they may.
One person there had been in Eat the Runt, so she was able to explain the play to us – which is about a job interview for a grant writer at a museum. Sounds boring, right? Except the play is done with 8 actors who must memorize all of the parts because each night, the audience casts the play. The whole play is written without pronouns and the names of the characters are gender-neutral. I can’t tell you more without spoiling what happens. But it was a lot of fun to read, and I hope to never do the show myself – memorizing one role is enough for my little pea brain. I can’t imagine learning 8 roles on the chance I might be called on to play any one of them. (But that’s the joy of a play reading – you get to do parts you may never ever get to do onstage. All the fun, none of the work!)
Beyond Therapy is just a hoot. About a woman (played on Broadway by Dianne Wiest) who answers a man’s (played by John Lithgow) personal ad, their interactions with their respective therapists, the man’s lover (he’s bisexual), and finally a waiter at a restaurant with the worst service ever. Bizarre and hilarious.
I can’t wait for the next (promised) play reading party; and see what we tackle next.