Carol Dennis and Stan Colemen lean over the back of theatre seats. Stan is holding a script.

Carol Dennis and Stan Coleman Photo credit: Register Guard

In January, 2017, local directors/producers Carol Dennis and Stan Coleman spearheaded a new theatre project in the Eugene/Springfield area called Minority Voices Theatre. MVT, a project of The Very Little Theatre, produces staged readings of plays that tell the stories of communities that don’t often see themselves represented on our local stages.

“Theatre can give people a sense of belonging, but only if they actually see themselves represented,” says Dennis.

In the Eugene/Springfield area, there has not been a lot of chance for people from underrepresented communities to feel that kind of inclusion. “It’s very difficult for local theatre companies to produce plays that feature characters of color or focus on the stories of minority communities,” explains Dennis. “The pool of experienced actors here is not very diverse.”

However, creating staged reading of plays can use community members with little or no theatre experience who are willing to learn the techniques of a staged reading.

Co-founder Coleman explains, “Doing staged readings will create opportunities to perform plays with minimal rehearsal time and low productions costs – and maybe help determine if the local community has the resources to create a full-scale production.”

Such performances can be a great source of entertainment and develop new actors, especially minority actors, for other theatre venues in the area, and provide those with experience more chances to hone their acting skills.

“This effort could really expand minority theatre and opportunities for minority involvement in area theatre, both on stage and in the audience,” concludes Coleman.

If you’d like to be involved in MVT readings, please use the contact form at the bottom of the Home Page.

Click here for more information about The Very Little Theatre.