Beginning in the winter of 2020, Rep Reads was created by our Development Associate, Rob Kapeller, and The Rep Volunteer Board as a welcoming space to connect with other theatre lovers and to celebrate our shared passion for theatre. Now two years later, we're excited to continue our play reading group which has become one of our community’s most beloved new programs!
Rep Reads offers you the chance to interact with plays in written form and allows you the chance to bring the magic of a production to life using only your imagination. Each month, volunteer facilitators lead lively discussions on a wide variety of plays, from classics to new works. By participating in Rep Reads, you’ll gain a deeper insight into the literary value of dramatic texts and celebrate a wide spectrum of perspectives from other theatre lovers in our community.
REP READS SPRING 2022 SESSION
Join us for “Masters at Work,” a series of discussions surrounding four masterpieces of contemporary theatre. Together we will consider what it means to be a master playwright and why theatre artists and audiences return to these plays over and over again. Our selections from award-winning playwrights were curated in collaboration with Augustin Family Artistic Director Hana S. Sharif and the Artistic staff of The Rep.
January 2023 Sessions: TOPDOG/UNDERDOG by Suzan-Lori Parks
Tuesday, January 17, 2023, 2 PM and 7 PM
Wednesday, January 18, 2023, 2 PM
A darkly comic fable of brotherly love and family identity is Suzan-Lori Parks’ riff on the way we are defined by history. The play tells the story of Lincoln and Booth, two brothers whose names were given to them as a joke, foretelling a lifetime of sibling rivalry and resentment. Haunted by the past, the brothers are forced to confront the shattering reality of their future. Winner of the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
February 2023 Sessions: A SOLDIER'S PLAY by Charles Fuller
Tuesday, February 21, 2023, 2 PM and 7 PM
Wednesday, February 22, 2023, 2 PM
In a segregated Louisiana army camp in 1944, the murder of a rancorous Black sergeant stirs deep-seated animosity and corruption among the soldiers under his command. When a clean-cut Northern captain arrives to investigate, truths are confessed and a shocking secret is revealed. Winner of the 1982 Pulitzer Prize for Drama.
March 2023 Sessions: INDECENT by Paula Vogel
Tuesday, March 21, 2023, 2 PM and 7 PM
Wednesday, March 22, 2023, 2 PM
Indecent by Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel is a deeply moving play inspired by the true events surrounding the controversial 1923 Broadway debut of Sholem Asch’s God of Vengeance—a play seen by some as a seminal work of Jewish culture, and by others as an act of traitorous libel. Indecent charts the history of an incendiary drama and the path of the artists who risked their careers and lives to perform it. Winner of the 2015 Edgerton Foundation New American Plays Award.
April 2023 Sessions: BETRAYAL by Harold Pinter
Tuesday, April 18, 2023, 2 PM and 7 PM
Wednesday, April 19, 2023, 2 PM
The play begins in the present, with the meeting of Emma and Jerry, whose adulterous affair of seven years ended two years earlier. Emma’s marriage to Robert, Jerry’s best friend, is now breaking up, and she needs someone to talk to. Thereafter, in a series of contiguous scenes, the play moves backward in time, from the end of the Emma-Jerry affair to its beginning, throwing into relief the little lies and oblique remarks that, in this time-reverse, reveal more than direct statements, or overt actions, ever could. A classic from the 2005 Nobel laureate in Literature.
Rep Reads is one of the many benefits of becoming a Rep donor. For more information on ways to make your gift, please click the link below to submit a brief form* to request information or contact our Individual Gifts Manager directly at (314) 687-4030.
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PLAYS FROM PREVIOUS SESSIONS:
June 2022 Sessions: A RAISIN IN THE SUN by Lorraine Hansberry
June Session I: Tuesday, June 28, 2022, 2 PM CST
June Session II: Tuesday, June 28, 2022, 7 PM CST
June Session III: Wednesday, June 29, 2022, 2 PM CST
Play Synopsis: Set on Chicago’s South Side, Lorraine Hansberry's celebrated play concerns the divergent dreams and conflicts in three generations of the Younger family: son Walter Lee, his wife Ruth, his sister Beneatha, his son Travis, and matriarch Lena. When her deceased husband’s insurance money comes through, Mama Lena dreams of moving to a new home and a better neighborhood in Chicago. Walter Lee, a chauffeur, has other plans: buying a liquor store and being his own man. Beneatha dreams of medical school. Hansberry's portrait of one family’s struggle to retain dignity in a harsh and changing world is a searing and timeless document of hope and inspiration.
July 2022 Sessions: THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST by Oscar Wilde
July Session I: Tuesday, July 19, 2022, 2 PM CST
July Session II: Tuesday, July 19, 2022, 7 PM CST
July Session III: Wednesday, July 20, 2022, 2 PM CST
Play Synopsis: The most renowned of Oscar Wilde’s comedies, The Importance of Being Earnest is the story of two bachelors, John ‘Jack’ Worthing and Algernon ‘Algy’ Moncrieff, who create alter egos named Ernest to escape their tiresome lives. They attempt to win the hearts of two women who, conveniently, claim to only love men called Ernest. The pair struggle to keep up with their own stories and become tangled in a tale of deception, disguise and misadventure. The elaborate plot ridicules Victorian sensibilities with some of the best loved, and indeed bizarre, characters to be found on the modern stage.
August 2022 Sessions: FEFU AND HER FRIENDS by María Irene Fornés
August Session I: Tuesday, August 23, 2022, 2 PM CST
August Session II: Tuesday, August 23, 2022, 7 PM CST
August Session III: Wednesday, August 24, 2022, 2 PM CST
Play Synopsis: On a spring day in 1935, eight women gather at Fefu’s New England home. A gracious host, Fefu organizes a weekend of camaraderie as well as work: The friends are rehearsing a charity presentation for a local school. But this gathering lays bare past heartaches and secrets among the women, from heartbreak to emotional and physical exhaustion, to devastating illness. At the center of this group is Fefu, a woman who is both powerful yet broken, belittling women as she cares for and nurtures her friends. Fefu and Her Friends is a feminist exploration of women’s roles and relationships--how they support each other, how they injure each other, and how they can create a community together. Notable for its experimental staging in which the audience moves through the theatre building to view different scenes, Fefu and Her Friends is a dynamic story of women, friendship, and the secrets that bind them together.