Reader’s Theater brings art to the community

May 5, 2023

MARION — The Marion Art Center’s Spring Arts series kicked off with a variety of performances by the Reader’s Theater Group on Friday, May 5. 

The Reader’s Theater Group performed a number of poems, skits and short stories for audience members to enjoy at the Benjamin D. Cushing Community Center.

According to Marion Art Center Vice President Jack Boesen, the theater group has performed in a variety of community hubs to reach audiences that “normally couldn’t come to the Marion Art Center. 

“We wanted to get a small group together to reach out to the community,” said Boesen. “Instead of [the audience] coming to the Marion Art Center we come to them.” 

Boesen said that in addition to performing at the Marion Council on Aging, the group has entertained at the Sippican Health Center and the Fairhaven Council on Aging. 

According to organizer Karrie Szatek, the Readers Theater Group brings the written word to life through performances.

“We reach out to people in the community of the South Coast and to engage them in readings that we have prepared to entertain,” she said. 

The group exemplified the theme of spring through their readings of the poems “The Late Wisconsin Spring” by John Koethe and “Today” by Billy Collins. 

Szatek said that the acts ranged from different eras, genres and cultures. 

The audience broke out in giggles as the group explored one of life’s greatest frustrations — dealing with disinterested DMV attendants with their performance of Christopoher Durang’s “DMV Tyrant.”

The skit follows protagonist James Agnes as he attempts to get his license. 

“It’s a nightmare visit to the DMV,” said Reader’s Theater member Donn Tyler.

Before audience members took their turn performing during the “open mic’ portion of the program, Tyler took on the role of Walter Mitty to perform the short story “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty.”

As a former English teacher, Tyler said he was excited to portray the role of the well known character who makes his daydreams become a reality. 

“As an actor it's sorta fun because [Walter Mitty] is acting himself in several different roles,” said Tyler.