Category Archives: Fun & Games

Book groups have had their day – it’s time to start a script-reading group

This article, by Colette Rouhier,  appeared in the US edition of The Guardian on July 13, 2015

I’d never been tempted to join a book group. I’m a slow reader and it seems like I’ve always got too much on to plough through a different novel each month. I think of myself as someone with a fairly decent knowledge of English literature, with one exception – until a couple of years ago I knew next to nothing about plays. I could sometimes connect a title to a particular playwright, but had no idea of plots or themes, and wasn’t that familiar with the writers. Continue reading Book groups have had their day – it’s time to start a script-reading group


Historical Perspective

Throughout history, the only valid reason people who could read didn’t cold-read plays— aside from the fact that they frequently saw them performed on stage instead—was the trouble and expense of providing scripts for all the readers.

Think about that.

All the other arguments are explored and debunked elsewhere on this site, but the bother of finding and paying for scripts made it an impractical pastime; otherwise, why wouldn’t families have read plays together of an evening—as they did poetry and prose (one reading to the others); as they played games, sang songs, told stories? Plays are all these things combined!

Dawn of a New Age

No argument is more persuasive for incorporating cold reads into popular culture than the Internet. For the first time in human history play scripts are instantaneously available and free.

Think about that.

What’s been impractical for centuries is now free and easy!

Cold Reads & Book Clubs

This post needs further development.

Plays, like novels, tell stories about people interacting with the world. They’re just as rich in plot and character, language, moral theme; they’re just as entertaining, funny, sad, enlightening, emotional.

We real novels to ourselves, by ourselves, in silent solitude. Plays are written to be spoken.

Spending time with other people who read plays is in itself well worth the time. Reading a play is entertaining, learning line by line, scene by scene, sharing the plot and characters, the theme, the language, rhythm—all of Aristotle’s elements but spectacle (live on stage).

It’s like a book club, only we read plays aloud, together, stopping to discuss along the way, instead of reading silently alone and talking after. Continue reading Cold Reads & Book Clubs

It’s a Game

This post (when it happens) will explain how cold reads are like theatre games actors and psychologists use to develop characters and personalities, imagination, spontaneity, … and so on

Like Talk Show. We listen and react, ad lib, extemporize

Compares cold reads to theatre games, all games, activities

Compare read to debate (the play the topic)