07.28.21

Making theatre matter, in service to all

Dear TRENDS Diary - 

I have been narrating audiobooks since 2008, and, since the pandemic, have been doing so in my home recording studio out of my basement in Longmont. So far, I have recorded more than 700 audiobooks, predominantly for the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled (NLS). 

While some of the titles I've recorded have been well-known classics like "To Kill a Mockingbird" or highly-lauded books like “A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing,” most of the books I record are lesser-known and not available in the commercial audiobooks market. 

Many NLS listeners are seniors who've lost their sight later in life and haven't learned to read Braille – so this NLS service is the only way for them to access a huge number of books. (I'm told the NLS also takes requests!) 

The service is free to anyone with a medical need for it. To learn how to apply, call the NLS at 1-888-657-7323. 

I also volunteer on the leadership team for IDEA Stages (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access), which works to disrupt attitudes and policies that marginalize BIPoC, LGBTQIA+ people, and those living with disabilities in the Colorado theatre community. I also volunteer on the Community Safety Committee helping local theatres to implement safer practices and prevent sexual harassment and other harm. 

Ever since my undergraduate years, I have been trying to figure out “how does theatre matter?” This work is so solidly hitting the mark for all the things that I care about. 

How can being an actor and a director be of service to people? Can it be meaningful to more people and to people who are frequently left out? Can we do better? 

I'd love to help if this work is useful to anyone reading this. I can be contacted through my website at maretrevathan.com. 

– Mare Trevathan, as told to John Moore