Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Play reading "RULES"

The purposes of the playreading this coming Sunday are: to allow time for conversation and "shop" talk; to read aloud plays that many playwrights may only have heard themselves read; and to allow playwrights to receive feedback from those who attend the reading.

We will gather at 2:00 and begin the readings at between 2:15 and 2:30 depending upon how many people are present and whether or not more are still arriving.

We will begin by reading the shortest plays first (1 minute, 10 minute, 1 act and then full-length).

We will discuss 1-10 minute length plays for 10 minutes each; 1 act plays will be discussed for 20 minutes; full-length plays for 30 minutes.

Discussions may last for less than the allotted time per play, but I will strictly enforce the upper limits of discussion or we will get bogged down and not get as many plays read and discussed as we could otherwise.

I am not trying to cut off discussion but to keep things moving; remember, you can always discuss a play with its playwright privately.

When discussing a play either make a POSITIVE comment (I liked how you did X) or ask a question (Why did John do Y?). Please do NOT make negative comments about a play.

Generally, playwrights have put a lot of thought and time into their works and negative comments will (more often then not) simply put him/her on the defensive. A person in a defensive posture is unlikely to hear your negative comment. However, a good question can cause a playwright to write down your question and consider later whether or not to change the play.

Playwrights may NOT respond to any question asked about their play (nor comment upon it once the reading of their play has begun).

Playwrights may, if necessary, respond to questions privately. Responding to questions publicly will use valuable time and prevent other participants from speaking about that particular play.

Discussion by the playwright prolongs the reading process. The purpose of the reading is for the author to receive feedback not have an opportunity to lecture those in attendance.

Commentators should keep both comments and questions SHORT.

Let's keep things moving!

Speak only once about a play unless everyone present has had an opportunity to speak and the moderator SPECIFICALLY opens the floor for a second round of questions/comments.

Playwrights need to hear as many points of view as possible, not just yours (or mine).

Have a good time.

Come back for the next new plays reading.

The next new plays reading will be in January 2009. Check the twitter site and this one for the date, time and place!

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