Celebrating 60 Years of Service

Playreading with Vivian Mitchel

Perhaps you have dreamed of being an actor, and now while living in your golden years, you feel the urge to get out there and chase your dreams. North Shore Senior Center’s playreading group, “Playreading with Vivian Mitchel,” allows folks the opportunity to try something new or jump back in the saddle of a past hobby.

As Agingwell.com says, “Middle aged and older adults are just as capable of learning new things and thriving in new environments, plus they have the wisdom that comes with life experience. If you believe in and have confidence in yourself, you are setting up a positive environment for change no matter what your age.”

In the group, participants learn about playwrights and discuss multitudes of plays. Each week the group reads a new play, but the real fun is when characters are assigned and the play is read aloud by participants who can "ham it up" in the company of other would-be thespians.

“I started the class because I have a background in theatre, and I knew lots of people at the Center were interested in the theatre,” said Vivian.

Not only is this group enjoying plays and acting, they are building friendships. As we age, it is normal for our inner circles to dwindle. However, this is also why it’s critical to get out there and meet new people.

Vivian explains, “The main reason this class has continued for the last 11 years is because we have a strong camaraderie and have fun. We laugh, we cry and we talk about Chicago theatre. The class has 15 participants, one who has been there from the start. Through the years, several people have trickled in, and we have lots of longtime members. This year, we had three newcomers and, let me tell you, they fit in like gloves!”

A great attribute of North Shore Senior Center’s Lifelong Learning programs is that the participants are a melting pot of ages, creating a diverse group. Agingwell.com says, “Make it a point to befriend people who are younger than you. Younger friends can reenergize you and help you see life from a fresh perspective. Whatever your living or work situation, you shouldn’t be alone day after day. Phone or email contact is not a replacement for spending time with other people. Regular face-to-face contact helps you ward off depression and stay positive.”

If you’re feeling adventurous, try something new and join “Playreading with Vivian Mitchel” or another one of North Shore Senior Center’s programs. For more information, please call 847.784.6030.

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