Puttenham Play Readers

For a short time I was a member of a play reading group in Guildford. This proved rather demanding as they met fortnightly and also one had to go to Guildford to collects one’s book prior to the play reading afternoon. Quite a number of Puttenham people said what fun it sounded, so I approached Betty Starte with a view to perhaps forming a play reading group here in Puttenham. Betty and I tentatively started in the winter of 1991/92 wondering if it would catch on and, somewhat to my surprise, we are still at it fourteen years later! Maggie Forwood has kindly and very efficiently stepped in to fill the organisational gap left by Betty’s sad death.

We read two plays in the winter months before Christmas and two plays after, meeting in the afternoon in someone’s home and finishing with a cup of tea; our choice of play would be made easier if some more men would join us. We get our plays through the Surrey Performing Arts Library in Dorking which also makes our choice difficult at times. Hopefully, they despatch a full set of books of our chosen play to Godalming Library where we collect them and having ‘cast’ the play, we distribute the books to the performers several days before the play reading afternoon. Recently we have had a very kind offer from the Players of Elstead Theatrical Society to borrow sets of their books, which we very much appreciate.

We have a lot of fun and tackle all sorts of plays from Noel ,Coward’s ‘Blithe Spirit’ to Ibsen’s ‘Hedda Gabler’ and would warmly welcome anyone who would like to join us, particularly if they are men! Acting experience not necessary, just get in touch with Mary Marriott or Maggie Forwood.

August 2006.

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