Unrehearsed Shakespeare play reading hosted by Sigma Tau Delta


Courtesy of the Department of English

Students, staff and faculty gathered on Oct. 13 in Reavis Hall to read “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.” (Department of English)

By Nick Glover, Lifestyle Editor

Sigma Tau Delta, an English Honor society, hosted an unrehearsed reading of Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” on Thursday in Reavis Hall. 

Because of its relaxed nature, the reading was open to students, staff members and faculty. 

To add to the night, snacks, pizza and candy were available to all those who attended. 

As the night went on, waves of laughter roared every few lines from the audience and the readers.

When deciding on the play, Sigma Tau Delta wanted something more upbeat and fun, something that people could unwind to and enjoy the experience of reading.

Brenna Bretzinger, a senior applied math and actuarial science major as well as the president of Sigma Tau Delta, said, “We wanted a comedy, not a tragedy, a trainwreck in the most fun way possible.”

When it came to the acting in the play, each role was assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. In hopes of a specific part, some readers even emailed Bretzinger ahead of time to reserve the role. 

One such reader was Anna Thompson, a junior English major, who played Hermia. 

“I was really into acting in high school and haven’t done it since,” Thompson said. “I wanted to get back to my roots.”

Some readers were less interested in the acting. Instead, they came to have fun and enjoy how hectic this Shakespeare play can be.

“I’m excited about all of the chaos with Puck and the magic flower,” Doria Brown, a junior English secondary education major said.

As the roles were being picked, Brown jumped up when the role of Puck, or Robin Goodfellow, was being selected. Brown read as Puck with a smile on her face the entire night.

According to Bretzinger, Sigma Tau Delta put on the event in order to create some social events based on their shared love of English. To do this, Sigma Tau Delta had to reach out to faculty members and find advisers willing to take on the responsibility of working with an honor society planning events of this scale. 

“We were looking for an adviser and Dr. Timothy Crowley reached out to us,” Bretzinger said. “He asked what events we had planned.”

When Crowley found out they were looking for a larger-scale event, he offered one he has run since his days in college: the unrehearsed reading. 

When it came to attendance, every chair in the room was full. After a few years in a pandemic, it seemed like English lovers were itching to get back to socializing. 

“I just moved to the area,” said Christine Zugay, a senior English major. “I thought I would try to be involved with people here.”

Zugay was not the only one looking for a group passionate about the arts. 

“In engineering, you know, there isn’t a passion,” Eric Iftner, a junior engineering major, said. “I like art and plays and all that so I came to embrace it.”