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The Play’s the Thing
Bill Powers

Among the dozens of activities at Carolina Meadows is the PlayReaders Group. Residents, some experienced actors, others newcomers to things thespian, gather on a regular basis to sit around the Fairways living room and read plays. On a recent afternoon the group went public, mounting Joseph DiPietro’s one act comedy, “Over the River and Through the Woods” in the Fairways Gallery.

The Fairways is Carolina Meadows’ assisted living facility, home to more than 60 residents. It was a troupe of Fairways residents who took most of the roles as the eccentric members of an intergenerational Italian-American family. Perhaps appropriately – or at least coincidentally — one of the cast members was a retired psychiatrist. He recounted at dinner that evening how during his years of practice in New York City he would on occasion meet the actor/playwright Woody Allen in the elevator of the Central Park West building where both he and Allen’s psychiatrist had their offices.

The Gallery was filled to capacity for the show, residents from independent living villas and apartments joining their Fairways friends. Although the performance may not have been up to Woody Allen’s standards, it was a delightful experience.

In the early evening the cast held a champagne party to toast their theatrical triumph and to make preliminary plans for their next reading. The satisfied group then moved to the dining room to continue their conversation while sharing a healthy and hearty meal.

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