First and Staged Readings are the first two steps in Abingdon's four-step script development process. All of our readings are free and open to the public.
First Reading Series
Forty to fifty times a year, Abingdon presents a First Reading of a full-length play. This is a significant step for the playwright; it provides the playwright an opportunity to hear his or her work read aloud, in some cases for the first time. A coordinator/director discusses the script with the playwright and assembles a cast of professional actors. With minimal rehearsal, the text is presented as a sit-down reading for a public audience. After the reading, a moderated audience discussion give both the artistic staff of Abingdon and the playwright constructive feedback to further develop the playwright’s vision for the play.
Almost all plays produced by Abingdon appeared on our stage as a First Reading.
First Readings are scheduled Mondays at 7:00pm and Thursday afternoons at 2:00pm.
See our First Reading Series schedule.
Staged Reading Series
Following a successful First Reading, the playwright revises the script based on feedback from the audience and artistic staff. The script may then be selected for the next step in Abingdon's development process: the Staged Reading. With more rehearsal time, minimal movement, stage business and greater direction for the actors, Staged Readings are presented before an expanded audience. A moderated audience discussion identifies the script’s strengths and any likely production concerns.
Staged Readings are presented once a month on Mondays at 7:30pm.
See our Staged Reading Series schedule.
All Readings are FREE and held at the Abingdon Theatre Arts Complex,
312 West 36th Street, 1st Floor.
For access to the theatres, take the REAR elevator to the 1st Floor, or use the 2nd set of glass doors (closer to 9th Avenue) and walk up one flight of stairs. There is no access to the theatres from the front elevator. The rear elevator opens 1 hour prior to curtain.