The Semi-Circle
   English Language Theatre in
   Basel since 1975


Play readings

The Semi-Circle Play readings take place once a month.  Members and non-members are welcome to join us at these informal sessions - to read with us, or simply listen.

Location: The Library, Centrepoint Building, Im Lohnhof 8, 4051 Basel (see map).  The doors open at 7pm, and we start the play reading promptly at 7.30pm.

The next play reading will be on
September 2nd 2019

This month we have two somewhat absurdist one-act plays:

Overtones by Alice Gerstenberg:

Alice Gerstenberg (1885 –1972) was a prolific American playwright, actress and novelist who was known for her experimental, feminist drama.

Overtones (1913): Probably Alice Gerstenberg’s most popular play in which she explores the idea that how we appear to others and how we appear to ourselves can significantly differ.  And so, what would happen if our public and private personas were able interact independently?


A Little Box of Oblivion by Stephen Bean:

Stephen Bean (1950 - ) is an English playwright and actor whose career also included farming, nursing and support worker for the learning disabled.

A Little Box of Oblivion (2007): A box, innocently placed on a park bench, becomes the centre of intrigue and the wild imaginings of the play’s characters. 


Note: Anyone interested in seeing these plays performed live will have the opportunity on September 3-6 2019 when they will be produced by the Zurich Comedy Club at the Theater STOK. You can find all the information about performance times and ticket sales here:

A word of warning - if anyone does wish to attend a performance, you should probably book tickets sooner rather than later as they are 70% sold out already.

Future dates 2019
  • 7 October
  • 4 November
  • 2 December


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    A little bit of history ...

    The origins of The Semi-Circle date from the 1960s when some British Circle drama enthusiasts took the opportunity to meet together and hold  informal play readings. These British Circle members eventually began to rehearse some play readings, which they then performed for family and friends. In 1976, The Semi-Circle (see picture below) was formed and has continued to explore drama through play readings and fully-staged performances ever since. 

    Down the years the play readings took place in many restaurants and other venues, during ski-weekends, while enjoying a Basel-based barbecue, and occasionally on Sunday afternoons in the small amphitheatre in Bruglingen in the Merian Gardens.

    Through the years the play readings have experienced ups and downs, but enthusiasm for them has never waned.
    Here is a list of the recent plays from 2010 to 2019.

    The Semi-Circle is pleased to announce that we have received a generous gift of a large number of books and play scripts  from the estate of long time S-C member Richard Levitt who sadly died in 2017.

    The photo above is from one of The Semi-Circle's first rehearsed play readings (1976): "Heartbreak House" by George Bernard Shaw


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