First Reads aims to replicate that initial table read on the first day of rehearsal—the questions that come up, the discovery of rhythm, the wild world of Shakespeare. We’ll read and discuss the play with a group of actors, a director, playwright, and dramaturg. All over Zoom! We will be joined via live-stream by students and others who will be able to engage in the discussions as the readers weave through the play. We welcome students, artists, the Shakespeare-curious, and everyone in between. Join us for one, or join us for all.
Thanks to the generosity of the Hitz Foundation, we are proud to provide an honorarium to everyone involved in FIRST READS. If you would like to contribute to the well-being and payment of artists in these unprecedented times, here are some resources:
Dramatists Guild Foundation provides emergency financial assistance to individual playwrights, composers, lyricists, and bookwriters in dire need of funds due to severe hardship or unexpected illness. Their requests for grants has spiked due to COVID-19. They depend heavily on contributions from individuals like you so they may continue to provide immediate relief to writers.
Since March 18, 2020, The Actors Fund has distributed emergency financial assistance to more than 2,800 people in our industry. This money is helping people cover basic living expenses, such as food, essential medications, utilities and more.