Reading English literature aloud: late 20th century and beyond

Course Dates: 22/01/25 - 26/02/25
Time: 18:00 - 20:00
Location: Keeley Street
Tutors: 
Come and enjoy reading aloud short stories and passages from novels by late 20th century and contemporary novelists. Join our Wednesday evening reading club at the college. This term:
All The Broken Places- John Boyne
The Thursday Murder Club- Richard Osman.
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Full fee £149.00 Senior fee £149.00 Concession £104.00

Reading English literature aloud: late 20th century and beyond
  • Course Code: DVP022
  • Dates: 22/01/25 - 26/02/25
  • Time: 18:00 - 20:00
  • Taught: Wed, Evening
  • Duration: 6 sessions (over 6 weeks)
  • Location: Keeley Street
  • Tutor: Vernon Thompson

Course Code: DVP022

Wed, eve, 22 Jan - 26 Feb '25

Duration: 6 sessions (over 6 weeks)

Any questions? drama@citylit.ac.uk
or call 020 4582 0413

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Centre for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

Come and enjoy reading aloud short stories and passages from novels by late 20th century and contemporary novelists. We will discuss the plot and themes of the novels while focusing on using your voice to provide narrative and create character. Vocal warm ups and sight reading also feature weekly. We hope you can join our Wednesday evening reading club at the college!
All The Broken Places- John Boyne
The Thursday Murder Club- Richard Osman.

What will we cover?

How we use pitch, pace and pause to tell stories. How we need clear diction for narrative as well as range and variety for vocal characterisation. The importance of good vocal delivery, powered by correct breathing techniques. We will always include an element of vocal warm -up at the beginning of the class and sight reading at the end.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

Demonstrate more confidence in the sound of your voice
Acknowledge a greater delight in modern and contemporary literature by reading passages aloud and thus sharing stories.
Identify some key breathing and vocal techniques to assist reading in public.
Notice an improvement in your sight reading skills.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

This is for all those who enjoy reading novels, and wish to develop greater confidence in reading aloud. You will have some ability with sight reading and if you are a non-native speaker, you must be fluent in English.
In order to get the most from the course you will be able to:
• Speak English fluently.
• Communicate in group situations.
• Give and receive constructive feedback.
• Read and respond to a range of texts.
• Take course notes for your own use.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

We will read in a large group together. You will be expected to read and prepare passages in advance.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?


Please read All The Broken Places in advance-the tutor will ask you to read a passage to assess your ability level. You will find a small hand mirror useful. You will need to buy or borrow copies of the texts in question.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

Any Voice or Speech course in the programme such as Storytelling for Business and Pleasure, or Voice Technique: Beginners
Please refer to our
full sequence of voice and speech classes at City Lit (click here) as you consider which area you would like to study next.

Vernon Thompson

Vernon has been full-time academic staff in the DRADAS department since September 2005 and prior to this a part-time tutor at the college from October 2003. His responsibilities include being Programme Manager for the year-long OCN accredited Foundation in Drama course. He is also Tutor-Co-ordinator responsible for overseeing all Voice Speech and Communication courses and also City Lit Theatre Company, for whom he has also directed ten productions. He has a major presence in teaching on the accredited courses. Vernon has an MA in Voice Studies from Central School of Speech & Drama, and a PGCE from City University. Previous posts include Head of Voice at the Academy Drama School and teaching at the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art. He works for Channel 4 News in London and TRT World in Istanbul as a voice consultant to their broadcasters and journalists, as well as accepting private clients. Vernon produces and directs his own professional London Repertory Company. Recent directing credits are "Dial M For Murder" (Marine Theatre, Lyme Regis, 2024) and "An Intervention" (Hen and Chickens Theatre, Islington, 2024).

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.