The Arden Shakespeare Gild invites you to join in a community reading of Spoon River Anthology, Edgar Lee Masters’ poetic portrait of an American town. Published in 1915, Spoon River Anthology was a favorite with early Arden settlers. It is a collection of 244 poetic monologues spoken by the deceased residents of a fictional Midwest town. From their graves, the “actors” speak their own epitaphs, “discovering and confessing the real motivations of their lives.” Spoon River Anthology was adapted for the stage by Charles Aidman and ran on Broadway in 1963. Our Spoon River will not be a stage production, but will resemble our own Arden memorial services, where those in attendance are invited to speak from their seats or at the front of the room as they wish. Whether you read a poem aloud, or listen to others, this is a really interesting, fun, unique event.
Here’s how it works:
1) See the list of poems to be read this year. We’ve divided the poems up in to a 5-year poem cycle of around 50 poems each. The link to the list of poems is below. Poems can be read at http://spoonriveranthology.net/. The Arden Library also has copies of the book.
2) Select the poems you’d like to read. We can also suggest a poem for you.
3) Call Faith Whittington (529-1559) or Elizabeth Varley (475-1098) to sign up for a particular poem. You may choose two poems, but time may limit us to one poem each.
4) Prepare your poem. It may be read or recited. You are welcome to wear a hat suitable to your character, or any other accessory that will add to your character (shawl, Bible, potted geranium). Costumes, as such, are not needed.
5) We will put together an order for our program, and on Nov. 2 all are invited to hear what we’ve come up with. The reading will be in front of the fireplace upstairs at the Gild Hall.