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Wednesday, September 7, 2016


WELLSBORO—Acting Up! Hamilton-Gibson’s readers theatre program for adults 55 and older, is entering its 14th season on Tuesday, Sept. 13.

Since 2002 when it began, an ever-changing group of fun-loving senior citizens has gathered at the H-G Office at 29 Water Street in Wellsboro from 2-3 p.m. on the second and fourth Tuesdays of each month from September through May to read stories, plays, and poems to each other. There are no fees and no long-term commitments.

“We look forward to seeing old friends and meeting new ones,” said Barbara Biddison. She and her husband, Larry have coordinated the program since 2005. Even though regular attendance is not required, the Biddisons are pleased with the strong repeat turnout. The one-hour sessions bring together congenial and mutually supportive people, and the relaxed, informal atmosphere provides a low-key, low-pressure opportunity to experiment with “reading with expression.”

“It’s a safe place for people who have a fear of speaking in public, as well as for those who have always wanted to act but weren’t ready for the stage," Barbara said.

When an invitation is received to perform outside H-G's familiar living room, any volunteers who feel up to the challenge of reading aloud in public can become participants in the Acting Out program. To date, Acting Out has offered entertainment for schools, senior centers, libraries, and churches, as well as for the Wednesday Morning Musicales, the Gmeiner Brown Bag Series, Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hospital, Representative Matt Baker’s Senior Expo, and the Hamilton-Gibson Summer Fringe Festival.

At the H-G Office, each Acting Up session is self-contained. Those present are not obligated to attend other sessions. The main focus on the second and fourth Tuesdays is a group reading of a story or play or a series of poems. Participants often bring short poems, humorous stories, or thoughtful articles to share aloud with the group. They also enjoy bringing to life vintage radio scripts, interesting essays and original short plays written by Acting Up participants. "There’s always plenty of fun stuff to read aloud among friends," Larry said.

Anyone interested in seeing what Acting Up is all about is welcome to attend a Tuesday session. For more details, contact Larry or Barbara Biddison at 570-724-4586.

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