The Actor's Studio continues their month-long series of Group Theatre readings April 29 with Claire and Paul Sifton's 1931. By May 17, the Studio will have read each of the 23 plays the Group produced during its existence. 1931 was first presented in the year of its title, opening at the Mansfield Theatre in New York on Dec. 10. The cast, under the direction of Lee Strasberg, included Franchot Tone, Clifford Odets, Steller Adler, Morris Carnovsky, and Bobby Lewis. The story -- very much of its post Crash era -- concerns a downtrodden couple who, after suffering a myriad of misfortunes including unemployment, eviction, vagrancy, a venture into crime, and disease, reject capitalistic American and joins the Communists. The Group did not have much luck with the production; it ran only 12 performances.
A spokesman at the Actor's Studio said it was their "philosophy" not to reveal the cast of the reading beforehand. The reading begins at 7 PM at the Studio, at 432 W. 44th St. To make a reservation , call (212) 757-2467.
-- By Robert Simonson