Made in the Berkshires co-curators Hilary Somers Deely and Barbara Sims hosted a benefit performance entitled “This Woman’s Work,” featuring Berkshire women writers reading their own work, staged readings of new works by local women playwrights, and songs by singer-songwriter Lisa Mandeville.
Mary Mott started off the evening, reading her funny, poignant short stories.
Berkshire Theater Group Executive Director Kate Maguire and Barbara Sims joined forces in a staged reading of “Adjustments: A Gentle Comedy for Cynical Times,” by Gloria Miller and Ilene Tetenbaum.
“After Prom,” a play by Jane Denitz Smith, was given a lively staged reading by Lauren Stanek, Cody Miller and Hilary Somers Deely.
Stockbridge artist Susan Merrill read one of her short stories, which one audience member compared in content and delivery to the deadpan humor of Andy Rooney.
A staged reading of the screenplay “Lovesick,” by Maria Nation, about a girl whose early sexual abuse leads her to become a nymphomaniac, had the audience spellbound. Cast members were Rudi Bach, Corinna May, Emma Dweck, Cody Miller, Walton Wilson and Hilary Somers Deely.
Lisa Mandeville, backed by her husband Fran Mandeville, delighted the audience with several original songs.
The evening ended with a lively talkback between the writers and the audience.
The evening, which ended with dessert, prosecco and general good cheer, gave the audience a tantalizing taste of what is to come in next year’s Made in the Berkshires Festival, slated for Columbus Day Weekend, 2012.