After transitioning to fully virtual sessions three (3) years ago as a response to the global pandemic, the National Drama Association of Trinidad and Tobago (NDATT) is pleased to announce the return of in-person readings of the Playwrights Workshop Trinbago (PWT) Monthly Readers Theatre Series (MRTS), for the April 2023 instalment.
PWT, which celebrates its 20th Anniversary this year, is an NDATT project, co-ordinated by playwrights, for the making of plays. On the first Wednesday of every month, a community of artists and arts enthusiasts come together to read and discuss new stage, screen, and radio plays, and give feedback that would assist the playwright in the further development of their work.
In an interview with the T&T Performing Arts Network, playwright Brendon O’Brien said, “The sense of discovery and community I’ve gained from [in person readings at] the Monthly Readers Theatre Series has not only been incredibly useful in my writing, but has helped remind me of theatre as a space to bring people together. Whether you’re a new writer looking for support, or an experienced dramatist hoping to refine your ideas, you should be here.”
Although the in person reading is a celebrated return, NDATT President – Safa Niamat-Ali says that the online component will not be discontinued, but rather will remain as part of a blended approach to the MRTS. She explained, “The late Tony Hall, who started the Playwrights Workshop Trinbago in 2003, [always] wanted to add an online component to the sessions to reach the regional and international theatre practitioners and audiences. One good thing that came out of the shutdowns due to covid was that it forced us to transition online, albeit sooner than we thought we were ready. We’ve since been able to read for playwrights from Jamaica, the US, Barbados, and Nigeria. We want to continue serving these playwrights and audiences who have become regulars of the circle, as well as to continue expanding our reach into other territories.”
The April instalment of the PWT MRTS will feature the cold reading of “Oga Pikin” (“Hamlet” in pidgin) by Nigerian playwright Ogini Bernard. The reading will take place on Wednesday April 5 at 7:00 PM (GMT -4)/Thursday April 6 at 12:00 AM (GMT +1) at the Helen May Johnstone Room, Queen’s Hall, 1-3 St Ann’s Rd, Port of Spain, and online via Zoom.
To mark the return of the in-person reading, refreshments courtesy Whipped Cakery, will be served at the Helen May Johnstone Room. Persons who wish to attend the in-person reading are required to go to https://bit.ly/PWTAprilRSVP to RSVP no later than Saturday 1st April 2023.
The NDATT extends its gratitude to the Board and Management of Queen’s Hall for the use of their facilities for the April 2023 instalment of PWT’s MRTS. More details on this reading will come in a subsequent release.
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Plays read in 2023 for the Monthly Readers Theatre Series will qualify for workshopping, staging and award consideration at the New Play Festival 2024. For further information or to submit a script for reading in the MRTS, email email@example.com; contact (868) 351-6293; find us on Facebook and Instagram @playwrightsworkshoptt; or on NDATT’s website https://iamndatt.org.tt/playwrightsworkshoptt/.