OLLI Member Tim Hoyt has found plenty of new interests during retirement and from his involvement with NC State’s lifelong learning program, first Encore and now OLLI. One of those is the Readers Theater Special Interest Group of which Tim is a founding member and coordinator. Here is a piece he has written to represent a conversation that could easily have taken place between two OLLI members……………….
Maxey: It’s so nice to meet you, Leona. I’m glad you’re taking the FDR Class. I really admire the president and Eleanor.
Leona: I’m glad to meet you, too, Maxey. The teacher is excellent. Is this the only class you’re taking?
Maxey: Nope. I’m taking two others. And I’m also involved in a SIG.
Leona: Really, Maxey. A Cig? I gave that up years ago.
Maxey: No, not that kind. I’m talking about an OLLI Special Interest Group.
Leona: So, what do you do in your…SIG?
Maxey: We act.
Leona: You act? Like how? Naughty? Nice? Up?
Maxey: Cute, Leona. No, Nothing like that. Well sometimes… But it depends on what script we’re reading.
Leona: Oh, that kind of actor. Like you put on plays?
Maxey: Sort of. We do old radio shows. In December we’re performing Archie Andrews Goes Christmas Shopping.
Leona: With Archie and Jughead and Betty and Veronica? They were in the funny papers when we were kids! I loved those silly characters.
Maxey Those are the ones! They drove their parents crazy, just like we did.
Leona: Isn’t it hard to memorize all those lines?
Maxey: Nope. It’s called Readers Theater. We read our scripts and wow ‘um with our voices. Like actors did back in the old days of radio.
Leona: I miss those days…
Maxey: So do I. We call ourselves The Speak Easy Players. We all liked listening to the radio back when we were kids. None of us ever thought we’d be acting!
Leona: That sounds like such fun. What else do you do?
Maxey: We performed The Thin Man, Case of the Goofy Groom, a few weeks ago. Remember detectives Nick and Nora Charles? And their dog, Asta?
Leona: I do! My dad loved that show. So did I. I can still hear that little dog barking. And their voices! So, what else do you do in this SIG?
Maxey: We like to perform for each other. We do monologues, and we do short scenes with a partner. And after rehearsal, we go out to dinner together.
Leona: Maxey, that sounds wonderful. Are there any other SIGS?
Maxey: Sure. There’s Questions Across the Spectrum where we do discussions around TED talks. And there are SIGS for writers. And a SIG for canoeing. And a…
Leona: The doors just opened.
Maxey: Well, thank you, Leona. That’s a nice metaphor for what we’re talking about.
Leona: No, Maxey, the doors to the classroom just opened.
Maxey: Dang. We better get in there. Do you want to get a seat up front?
Leona: Yes. And will you tell me more about these SIG things over coffee after class?
Maxey: I would be delighted.
Tim Hoyt, OLLI Member, OLLI Writers Group, founding member of Questions Across the Spectrum and Readers Theater SIGs, OLLI Hospitality Committee.