Salford based actor and avid rambler, Adrian Palmer, has been getting creative during this year’s lockdown by hosting online readings of some of the nation’s best-loved novels and fairytales, called Story Circle, he performs live over Zoom.
This Friday the 18th of December, he will be live reading Charles Dickens’ ‘A Christmas Carol’ via Zoom to help get people in the Christmas spirit.
It has been a strange year for most with the impact of the unprecedented Covid-19 pandemic. Many have been unable to see their friends and loved ones, and in a time of ‘social-distancing’ and ‘isolating’ to protect others from the virus, socialising has become a fond memory, for now at least.
Mr. Palmer shared how he has coped throughout the duration of lockdown and how it has affected his acting career: “Not too bad, you know, actors are pretty used to being periodically unemployed.
“I had a nice little year planned out with a couple of jobs in the theatre, and so on, which disappeared without a trace, but hopefully they’ll come back when the pandemic is over and lockdown is eased.”
Mr. Palmer managed to keep himself busy while doing what he does best and finding new ways of performing live for people: “In the meantime I’ve been spending a lot of time reading stories online. I started off reading to a couple of friends and then I read to family members, and then I got a job reading to an online book club.”
As many people have been left feeling lonely and isolated this past year and have perhaps been struggling with their mental health, Mr. Palmer’s idea took off and first became a popular virtual entertainment event amongst his family and friends which led him to read to groups of people online:
“People really enjoyed it and I found that the groups I read for kept coming back week after week and they would kind of look forward to it.”
Not only does Mr. Palmer enjoy performing live, he also enjoys walking through nature: “I’m also a keen rambler. I walk in several of the groups in the Manchester area.”
He decided to use his online readings to raise some money for charity: “I got chatting to a friend and I suggested that I might do a reading of A Christmas Carol to raise money for The Ramblers and that’s where it started.”
On why he would like to raise money for The Ramblers Charity, Mr. Palmer said: ” They do very good work in keeping footpaths open, also in organising group walking sessions which is such a brilliant thing really. It’s so good for your social life and your mental health, and just really enjoying being outdoors in our beautiful countryside.
He continued: “Manchester is uniquely placed for walking. From where we are here in Salford, there’s some really fine walking country from the Pennines, Lancashire, the Lake District, Cheshire and North Wales to Yorkshire, so in every direction there’s marvellous walking.”
The Ramblers Charity raises money to keep and maintain footpaths and rights of way through some of the UK’s nature walks and countryside.
On Friday the 18th of December 2020 at 7:30pm Mr. Palmer will perform a reading adaptation of the novel, ‘A Christmas Carol’ by Charles Dickens on Zoom. To purchase a ticket you must first log on to the Just Giving page and then proceed to make a donation. The suggested minimum donation per ticket is £3.00 and once you make a donation you will be emailed a Zoom link to the virtual event. All proceeds go to The Ramblers Charity.
On his plans for online reading next year, Mr. Palmer said he would like to: “Keep going with it because I really enjoy it and, to my surprise, lots of other people seem to like it as well.”