Vocabulary Monologue – A long speech spoken by one person, revealing personal thoughts and feelings. Soliloquy – A monologue usually delivered while the character is alone onstage, thinking aloud. First Person – Indicates the speaker’s point of view as “I.” Focus – In readers theatre, the place or people that the actors look at when they speak their lines. The Monologue Playwrights sometimes use monologues to help the audience understand the thoughts and emotions of a character. The use of the monologue in drama dates back to the ancient Greeks. A monologue can be delivered with or without other characters on the stage. The Monologue The soliloquy is used throughout the plays of William Shakespeare. Hamlet’s famous “to be or not to be” speech is a good example. Performing an original monologue gives the theatre student an excellent opportunity to analyze a particular character. Writing an original monologue is a good first step in the playwriting process. Developing your Character (Points to Consider) 1. Things we have done or not done in our own lives. 2. People we have met, known, loved, hated, feared, or respected. 3. Ageless stories or myths, perhaps told from a new viewpoint. 4. Group interaction and artistic collaboration. 5. Ideas for resolving various conflicts. 6. A puzzlement (something we don’t understand) The 5 Ws It is important for the audience to know the five Ws as early as possible in a monologue, scene, or play: Who? – Who is speaking to whom? What? – What is happening? When? – When is this occurring? Where? – Where is this occurring? Why? – Why is this happening? The Original Monologue Monologue writing is a wonderful way to develop a “life story” for your original character. A good way to start is with a photograph or collection of photographs. Select a variety of characters for whom you could create an imaginary story. Character Ideas Character Ideas Character Ideas Character Ideas Character Ideas Character Ideas Writing the Monologue Now that you have formed an idea of what the character will look like, begin to develop a background and personality through character analysis. Begin to write the thoughts that your character might want to say aloud. Write the monologue in the first person. Rehearsing the Monologue MEMORIZE YOUR LINES!!! A honest and believable performance cannot take place with your face glued to a script. Make the words your own, and perform them as if you are saying them for the first time. Focal Point: If your character is talking to someone else, pick a focal point (ex. 12 o’clock). Create a picture in your mind of what the other character looks like. Rehearsing the Monologue Use your imagination: Imagine your character in the setting that you pictured as you wrote the monologue, or the setting that the playwright has chosen. Notations: Write your blocking / staging in your script IN PENCIL ONLY. Also, be sure to score your scripts with beats. Write notes in your script that you receive during rehearsal. NEVER BREAK CHARACTER! Commit to the task at hand, which is to give an honest and believable performance. The Slate A slate is an introduction of yourself and the piece that you are performing. Your slate should include the following: 1. Your name 2. The title of the selection 3. The playwright’s or playwrights’ name(s) 4. The name of the character you are portraying * Do not “perform” your slate. This is an opportunity to showcase who you are as a person. Be professional. The Slate The following is an example of an acceptable slate: “Hello, my name is (first & last name). I will be performing a selection from (title of play), by (name(s) of playwright(s)). I will be portraying the character of (name of character).” Be sure to take a brief pause after your slate, just before you begin the piece. Essential Questions What must you do as an actor to prepare for a monologue (6 things)? What type of monologue are you going to write or look for to perform? Why? Performance Projects Given Monologues – Select and prepare (slate, focus, character analysis, character traits, OOT, memorization, rehearsal) a 90-second given monologue for performance. Choice Monologues - Select and prepare (slate, focus, character analysis, character traits, OOT, memorization, rehearsal) a 90-second choice monologue for performance. Original Monologues - Select and prepare (slate, focus, character analysis, character traits, OOT, memorization, rehearsal) a 90-second original monologue for performance.