Plays / Drama Sitemap - Page 4 2014-04-17

Study Guide for Susan Glaspell's "Trifles"
Farmer John Wright has been murdered. While he lay asleep in the middle of the night, someone strung a rope around his neck. And that someone might have been

"Promedy" - Newly Published Play for Teens
It's delightful for a playwright to see his/her work on stage. It's also a joy to see the work in print. I have been very fortunate to have had twenty of my

"Topdog/Underdog" by Suzan-Lori Parks
Here's a play that brought back an embarrassing memory. I was nineteen years old, hanging around Seattle, when I noticed a man tossing three cards back and

Vermont Playwrights Award
If you are a New England playwright (residing in Vermont, New Hampshire or Maine) here is a great opportunity to get your work presented (and make a little

"How Do I Join the Screen Actors Guild?"
It's award season - the time of year when Hollywood's elite walks down the red carpet, smiles for the media, and brushes up on their acceptance speeches.

Motion Capture: Is It Really Acting?
For over a month now, fanboys have been speculating whether or not Zoe Saldana will receive an Oscar nomination for her motion capture performance in James

The Setting of "A Streetcar Named Desire"
A Streetcar Named Desire written by Tennessee Williams is set in the French Quarter of New Orleans. To characters like the vulgar yet attractive Stanley

What is a Dramaturg?
A dramaturg can be many things. One definition (sort of an old-fashioned one) is that a dramaturg is a critic who constructively critiques and encourages

Children's Play: "Gooney Bird Greene"
My daughters are having a blast in their theater workshop. This is the fourth show they have been involved in, and I have been so proud to see their

Jane Austen's "Emma" on Stage
Masterpiece Classic has presented yet another sumptuous adaptation of a Jane Austen novel. Over a decade ago, the BBC did a fantastic job with Pride and

Who is George Spelvin?
No one, really. Whenever you see the name George Spelvin in a theater program, that means one of the actors is following a long standing tradition of

Review of "Bus Stop" - Classic 1950s Play
William Inge's comedy, Bus Stop, is filled with sentimental characters and a slow-but-pleasant, slice-of-life storyline. Although dated, Bus Stop manages to

Classic Monologue from "Cyrano"
Last year, on Valentine's Day, I claimed that Cyrano de Bergerac is a more romantic play than Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. Having re-read Edmond

"Prelude to a Kiss" by Craig Lucas
Now that the Hallmark-driven fury of Valentine's Day has washed over us like a pink, chocolate-scented wave, I would like to mention a romance that's not

Storytelling Improv Games
Most theater games are a form of spontaneous story-telling. So much of improvisation depends upon the sudden generation of setting, character, conflict and

Dr. Vivian Bearing in "Wit"
I've had my share of English teachers. Some were easy-going, creative and engaging. And some were those tough-love teachers who are as disciplined as a

Who is Jane Martin?
Jane Martin is the pseudonym of one of America's most intriguing living playwrights. So far, her identity has yet to be revealed. Nor is it known why she

Husband Character - Comedic Male Monologue
In this comedic monologue for male actors, David Pomerville, a man in his late forties, tries to win back his estranged wife. This humorous monologue comes

"That Was the Best Monologue Ever!"
That's what you want them to say, right? This is the time of year when drama students from all over the nation -- the world even -- are preparing monologues for

Ideas for Theater Fundraisers
For many non-profit theaters, tickets sales is not enough to survive financially. That means, in economically challenging times such as these, other means of

Steppenwolf's Young Adult Council
For over twenty years Sandra Cisneros short-but-sweet (and sometimes disturbing) novel, The House on Mango Street has been required reading for high school

"Proof" by David Auburn
Catherine, the twenty-something daughter of an esteemed mathematician, has just laid her father to rest. He died after suffering through a prolonged mental

New Dramatic Female Monologue
I've added a new monologue to our slowly-but-steadily growing library. All of the monologues at About.com are free to use. Some are original (by yours truly)

Playwright Terence McNally
Few living playwrights can match the complexity (and success) of Terrence McNally's stage career. During the 60s, he began working as a stage manager at New

Vocal Warm Ups and Enunciation Exercises
My kids are in a theater workshop for a little show called Goonie Bird Greene. At the beginning of every rehearsal, they start things off by doing a few

"Antigone" in Sixty Seconds
Got a minute? More importantly, do you have a minute before you go into that literature class to discuss that old Greek play you didn't read? Well, then

Theater Practical Jokes
Happy April Fools Day! Even though we, as actors, teachers, actors, and lovers of the stage, know that the theater is sacred and that performances should be

"Ruined" by Lynn Nottage
Playwright Lynn Nottage wanted to write an adaptation of Berthold Brecht's Mother Courage and Her Children set in the war-ravaged nation, the Democratic

What is a Closet Drama?
No, a closet drama is not a play that you perform in your closet. (Although that would be awesome.) Instead, a closet drama is a dialogue-based form of

Ken Ludwig's "Be My Baby"
Ken Ludwig is a master of comedic mix-up and good-natured mayhem. Although Noises Off by Michael Frayn is my all-time favorite farce-set-in-a-theater,

"The Baltimore Waltz" by Paula Vogel
I just finished reading The Baltimore Waltz by Paula Vogel. I picked it up from the library, with no idea what it was about. Based on the cover, which shows

Character Analysis of Mama Nadi from "Ruined"
Ruined, an intense Pulitzer Prize winning drama by Lynn Nottage, is set in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, a place infamous for its civil wars,

"The Baltimore Waltz" - Characters and Themes
One of the best ways for student's to write about a character from a play is to ask questions. What motivates the character? Why does she behave this way?

Obie Awards: Honoring Independent Theatre
Since 1955 the Village Voice, one of New York City's most iconic newspapers, has celebrated Off-Broadway shows with its own special ceremony: The Obie Awards.

"Cassandra's Rant" - Comedic Monologue
It is always a pleasure to add yet another comedic speech to our library of free-to-use monologues. Cassandra's Rant spoofs the many tragic tales from

What is a Groundling?
Groundlings were the lowest level of British theater patrons during the 1600s. In Shakespeare's time, a groundling would pay a single English penny. They would

The Best of Henrik Ibsen
Norwegian playwright and poet Henrik Ibsen (1828 - 1906) created twenty-six plays and a volume of poetry. He is noted for his nationalistic spirit and for

Acting Monologues for Teens
Have you tried looking for a teen monologue in an anthology? Lots of publishers sell monologue collections; the only problem is that most of the monologues are

"The Nerd" by Larry Shue
Just finished reading Larry Shue's The Nerd for the first time. This is one of those comedies that I've heard about since I was a kid. It was originally

"The Sisters Rosensweig" by Wendy Wasserstein
In the preface of her play, Wendy Wasserstein explains the delightful yet confusing moment when she watched the first preview of her play, The Sisters

2010 Tony Awards - Best Play Nominees
This year, voters are going to have a difficult time deciding which play deserves the award. There are four top-notch shows to choose from: Next Fall is

Denzel Washington in Broadway Revival "Fences"
Oscar-winner Denzel Washington stars in a revival of one of August Wilson's finest plays, Fences. A mere glimpse of a video clip from the official website, and

"Sylvia" by A. R. Gurney
Don't confuse this urbane and occasionally profane comedy with Edward Albee's play, The Goat or Who Is Sylvia? Yes, both of them involve animals, but A.R.

What is Jacobean Theatre?
Jacobean Theatre is a period of English drama which took place during the reign of King James I, from 1603 to 1625. In the history of English drama and

"Rumors" by Neil Simon
I just finished reading one of Neil Simon's most madcap plays: Rumors. This two-act comedy follows in a long tradition of farce, humor derived from

What is Dramatic Irony?
Have you ever had some kid approach you in the school yard and say, I know something you don't know? They probably use it in that annoying, sing-sing,

What is Kabuki Theater?
Kabuki is a highly stylized form of Japanese theater which began in the early 1600s. In this honorable theatrical tradition, Kabuki merges drama, song, and

Gary Coleman & Avenue Q
Gary Coleman died today. He was only 42 years old. (And due to a kidney disease which stunted his growth, he looked considerably younger.) I have to admit,

"The Boys Next Door" by Tom Griffin
The Boys Next Door is a two act comedy-drama about four intellectually disabled men who live together in a small apartment -- and Jack, the caring social

New Funny Monologue for Actresses
The newest original monologue comes from my one-act play: Symbolism. (It's my third of three one-acts, each one dealing with a different aspect of

Can a Modern Day "Doll's House" Work?
When I am not watching, reading, or writing about plays, you can often find me in the classroom, teaching students about -- you guessed it -- plays. One of

Play Review: "The Hobbit"
Sci/Fi Fantasy film geeks (including me) are all a twitter about the departure of Benicio del Toro from the upcoming film version of The Hobbit. He was going

Improv Party Games
Lots of people play theater games at parties, and they don't even realize it. If you have ever played Charades or Cranium, you been utilizing your theatrical

What is "Limelight"?
When someone says they want to be in the limelight. It means they want to be the center of attention, or that they want to be famous. But before it became

"I Need a Location" - Improv Ideas
One of the essential ingredients to a good improv scene is a setting. Often times a random or unusual setting can be a catalyst for wild and funny ideas.

Is "The Revenger's Tragedy" a Tragedy?
Ever since college I have heard about heard about The Revenger's Tragedy, a bloodthirsty play that (according to one of my professors) makes Macbeth look

"A Raisin in the Sun" - Act One, Scene One
Call me naïve, but I've often been an optimist about the human race. I like to think that as the decades roll by, we humans strive to become more

David Mamet on "Theatre"
Last week, talk-show satirist Stephen Colbert interviewed David Mamet, playwright/director and self-proclaimed liberal-turned-conservative. While they smacked

"The Producers" - The Genius of Mel Brooks
I'm not a devoted Mel Brooks fan. I loved Young Frankenstein when I was a kid -- I still enjoy it, although the pacing seems slow by today's standards. Robin

Who is Mrs. Malaprop?
The character Mrs. Malaprop is a humorous aunt who gets mixed up in the schemes and dreams of young lovers in Richard Brinsley Sheridan's 1775

"Annie" and the Orphans
When you are the father of two daughter who want to be in musical theater, you find yourself getting pulled in to all sorts of unusual situations. Take me, for

"A Raisin in the Sun" - Act One, Scene Two
As I was continuing my exploration of Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun, I was contemplating that $10,000 insurance check which arrive during the

"A Raisin in the Sun" - Act Two
Often times, a playwright establishes the characters and basic situation in Act One, and then creates even more conflict at the beginning of Act Two.

"Spring Awakening" by Frank Wedekind
One of the musicals that I did not include on my Top Ten list (to the annoyance of a few Broadway purists) was Spring Awakening, a 2006 rock-musical based

"Once Upon One Time" - Pidgin Fairy Tales
Honolulu's Manoa Valley Theatre is presenting Once Upon One Time, a humorous retelling of fairy tales with Hawaiian flare. The play was written by the late

Summer Time Improv
Improv games aren't just for urban black box theaters. These activities are fun for anyone who is imaginative, sharp-witted, and capable of extreme

Act Three of "A Raisin in the Sun"
In the final act of A Raisin in the Sun, the audience witnesses the redemption of the protagonist, the positive transformation the supporting characters

What Is a Memory Play?
Although they can be structured differently, memory plays usually begin with a recollection, a monologue delivered by the main character. The protagonist

"In the Heights" at the Pantages Theater
I am just moments away from watching the matinee showing of In the Heights, a hip-hop, salsa-laced feel-good musical about life in the Washington Heights

Reduced Shakespeare Company
On my bookshelf, I have a mighty tome titled The Complete Works of William Shakespeare - Unabridged. It's got everything, the sonnets, the lengthy poems, all

Opening Night Rituals
When I was in high school, my drama teacher had a very specific opening night ritual. Before the curtain would open, the cast and crew members would stand in

Walter Lee from "A Raisin in the Sun"
There are well-developed characters in Lorraine Hansberry's play, A Raisin in the Sun -- and most of them seem to experience a profound transformation

"The Dudleys - A Family Game"
Most playwrights are nostalgic for their past. Look at the way Eugene O'Neill explores the decades of his childhood, or how Tennessee Williams explores his

Emotional Rollercoaster
It's such a cliche, isn't it? That over-used phrase: emotional rollercoaster. It used when we want to describe something that involves a tumultuous

What is a "Meta-Musical"?
Any art form that refers to itself can be considered meta. According to Etymology Online, the term meta is originally a Greek word meaning higher beyond.

Symbolism in "Trifles"
The one act play, Trifles by Susan Glaspell is deceptively simple. It's the story of two wives who accompany their husbands (a sheriff and a witness to a

Adventures in Children's Theatre
Whew! What a week I've had! If you have been following my blog, you know that it's a rare occasion that I let this many days go by between an entry. I can't

Name Your Favorite Improv Game
Although we have a growing list of improv games at the Plays / Drama Guidesite, there are still hundreds (if not thousands) of improvisational activities still

"Mrs. Warren's Profession" by G.B. Shaw
One of George Bernard Shaw's earliest plays, Mrs. Warren's Profession is also one of the playwright's most controversial dramas. Written in the late 1800s,

The Iceman Bummeth
This play really bums me out! But maybe that's the point. Set in a dreary New York bar in 1912, The Iceman Cometh centers on the low-life patrons who

A Day in the Life of Lurch
You rang? Any fan of classic television knows the foreboding, baritone voice of Lurch, the gargantuan butler from The Addams Family. Currently, the

Comedic Monologue - "Kicking Out the Roommates"
What happens when a very passive character must finally become aggressive? A lot of awkwardness, and if performed correctly, a lot of hilarity. In the new

The Costume Gallery
My eleven-year-old daughter amazes me. Since she was eight, she has been able to sew just about anything: pillows, teddy bears, clothes -- she even stitched

Embarrassing Moments on Stage
I've made a couple blunders on stage -- nothing too out of the ordinary, just a forgotten line or a clumsy exit here and there. However, I did observe a

Theater Careers at Sea
Every year, thousands of starry eyed dreamers buy a plane ticket to Hollywood or New York City in order to make it big in the acting business. But maybe they

Site-Specific Theater
Theater doesn't need to happen in an auditorium. It can take place in a park, in a garden, even in a grocery store. If you have been following the

Why Is It Titled "The Crucible"?
This fall, literally millions of high school students will be reading Arthur Miller's The Crucible for the very first time. Written in the early 1950s, this

Ten Minute Play Festival in Akron, OH
See that chair right there? The one crowding my blog post? This chair was donated by the late Kitty Brown, a local legend among the good folks of the

Napoleon: The Ultimate Drama Critic
I knew from my high school class on World History that Napoleon Bonaparte was a big jerk. (Or should I say, a little jerk?) I recall reading all of the

The Origins of Greek Drama
Imagine what it must have been like for Thespis. You know, Thespis, right? It's thanks to him that actors are sometimes referred to as thespians. History

"A Year with Frog and Toad"
I am always on the look out for a good children's musical. They are not always easy to find. Many shows written for children make their storyline too preachy,

The Keller Family in "All My Sons"
Arthur Miller's drama All My Sons asks a tough question: How far should a man go to secure his family's well-being? The play delves into deeply moral issues

Favorite Halloween-Themed Shows?
This evening, I'll be watching Little Shop of Horrors for the very first time -- live that is. I have seen the movie version many times, and I have both the

Looking for a Monologue?
Maybe there is an audition coming up. Perhaps you are hoping to impress your drama teacher. Or maybe you simply want to show-off to the world on YouTube.

Noel Coward's "Brief Encounter"
When I think of Noel Coward many things come to mind: witty dialogue, profound subtext, and amusing songs. But there are some things that don't immediately

The Genius / Madness of Orson Welles
I finally watched the film Me and Orson Welles, the not-quite-true bio-pick that focuses on a young actor (played by Zach Ephron) who makes his Broadway debut

Phantom of the High School?
My local community theater has been waiting and hoping to do big-name shows like The Phantom of the Opera. And it's not necessarily because the directors are

Controversial Plays: "The Emperor Jones"
I have been compiling a list of boundary-pushing plays, dramatic works that were controversial when they were first performed, and still riveting when they

Plays That Pushed the Envelope
Because theater is always pushing the boundaries, it often evokes heated conversations, even public outrage. And sometimes the impact of the play helps society

Spiderman: Turn Off the Dark
I love Bono and Edge, the lyrical heart and soul of the super-rock band, U2. And I love Julie Taymor, the director of Broadway's The Lion King (and some

How Do Actors Cry?
If I asked you to produce tears within the next sixty seconds, could you do it? (Give it a try before you continue to read.) Physically producing genuine

Rocky Horror Glee Show
Attention Gleeks! Your favorite prime-time musical comedy Glee will be paying homage to the cult-classic Rocky Horror Picture Show. Why on earth is the Glee

A Student's Guide to Reading Plays
As a teacher, right about now is my favorite part of the semester. It's the time when my students stop reading argument essays. They put down their grammar

"The Birthday Party" by Harold Pinter
Today is my birthday. One year older. Sigh. I shouldn't be so gloomy, since birthday parties are happy occasions. Yet, whenever I think of birthdays, I

Comedy in the Ancient World
During the Festival of Dionysus, audiences would sit and watch three tragedies in a row. How depressing is that? So, to expunge the seriousness of the viewing

Thespians: The Movie
Today I found out about a new documentary that is soon to be hitting the festival circuit. It's called Thespians, and it focuses on the journey to the largest

Zombie Improv
It's fun to act like a zombie. You can take things slowly (maybe even limp a little bit). You don't need to memorize a lot of lines (except for BRAINS!).

"Don Juan" and All Saint's Day
Today begins the Latin American custom of Día de los Muertos, the Day of the Dead, two days of honoring the spirits of those who have passed on. The

"Stelllllaaaa!" - The Famous Scene from "Streetcar"
Stella! Stell-lahhhhh! STELL-LAHHHHH!!!!!: In this famous moment from A Streetcar Named Desire, Stanley Kowalski stumbles out to the street, half-drunk,

Stanley VS. Blanche: Round One
Spawning from the pages of A Streetcar Named Desire, the rivalry between Blanche DuBois and Stanley Kowalski is one of the most complex, sexually tense, and

New Angle on Dickens' "A Christmas Carol"
Ever since Charles Dickens' penned his classic holiday story, playwrights have created an abundance of adaptations and spoofs. One of my favorite twists on A

"The First Thanksgiving... According to Dwayne"
There are dozens of plays that take place during the Thanksgiving holiday. Perhaps not surprising, most of them are cynical, darkly-comic dramas about awkward

Oscar Wilde's Lady Bracknell
If you haven't seen The Importance of Being Earnest, then you haven't experienced one of the best comedies ever written. Oscar Wilde's farce satirizes the

Characters in "The Crucible"
It's that time of year again.  Time for thousands of high school students around the countr  to write an essay about Arthur Miller's classic retelling of those

Kander and Ebb's "The Scottsboro Boys"
In 1931, nine young men were accused a heinous crime: the gang rape of two young women. The men and two ladies were traveling across the states in a boxcar.

Free Thanksgiving Day Play
Finally, it is starting to look like autumn in my neighborhood. I live in southern California, a place where the prevailing heat almost makes you forget that

Tyler Perry's "For Colored Girls"
The November release of Tyler Perry's latest film For Colored Girls has garnered lots of critical backlash. I was checking out the stats on

"The River Why" by David James Duncan
One of my favorite books to use as a teacher was adapted into a play earlier this year. The River Why is a wonderfully descriptive novel set in the backwoods

Harry Potter Improv Games
Around midnight tomorrow I will be standing in line at the movie theater, waiting for the premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I will be hanging

Writing About Plays: Using Outside Sources
Study guides to plays and literature come in handy when it is time for a student to write an essay. However, I always warn my pupils (and sometimes my

Guest Reviews: Books About the Theatre
My daughter recently borrowed a theater book from her school library. The text is aptly titled Everything About Theatre! If you are a drama teacher

Playwright: David Henry Hwang
When I was 16 years old, I visited Broadway for the very first time. I took in as many musicals as possible (because I have always been a huge Phantom and Les

Christmas Melodramas
What is a melodrama? It is an over-the-top play (often set in the old West or in rural North America) filled with exaggerated characters and situations.

The Scoop on "Shmoop"
Writing a study guide is not an easy task. One must combine summary, analysis, and historical context, all the while keeping the reader awake -- maybe even a

Down the "Rabbit Hole"
If you look at the more recent writing credits of David Lindsay-Abaire, you would think the guy is just a standard feel-good Hollywood hack (and I mean that

Comedic Monologue: "Brumbly the Elf"
I guess I have started a new holiday tradition. During the last two Christmas seasons, I have added new comedic holiday monologues to our growing collection of

Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre
The Swedish Cottage is a quaint little puppet theater located in world famous Central Park. But it wasn't always nestled in NYC's forest hideaway. It was

Realism in Theatre
When I was in my early teens, my mother and I had a Saturday night movie watching tradition. We would watch one scary movie to freak ourselves out, and then we

Share Your Opinion: "Love Never Dies"
The long-awaited Andrew Lloyd Webber musical Love Never Dies opened in London's West End in March 2010. The reviews were a mixed bag. Some critics were

Shakespeare's "The Winter's Tale"
I hope your holiday season has been merry. I have received two wonderful gifts this year. The first one is very materialistic. I got an ipad! But the second one

The History (and Dangers) of Stage Flying
If you follow Broadway news, then you probably already know about the continuing problems that Spiderman: Turn Off the Dark has been experiencing. So far,

Get Your Gleek On!
Fans of the Broadway show-tune laden comedy Glee will have to wait until after the Superbowl before watching a new episode. That's right, it won't be until

"Everyman" - Religious Drama from the Middle Ages
I am proud to say that I haven't been using my new ipad to simply play video games and watch silly YouTube videos. Yes, I admit, I have been playing a lot of

List of "Ask Fors"
Last year, I concocted a lengthy list of Ask Fors, random questions one might ask an audience to begin an improv scene. There are about a twenty-five to

Favorite Stage Effects
Our community's local playhouse currently features a rousing rendition of Willy Wonka -- based on the Roald Dahl children's classic. Despite the fact that

Drama Activities: Quick Commercials
One of my favorite classroom activities involves the fast-paced world of advertising. I call it Create-A-Commercial, and it's an ideal activity for English

Apps for Actors
I love searching for apps on my i-pad. Sometimes I don't even use those apps. I just enjoy finding a freebie or getting a good deal on Plants Vs. Zombies.

Playwright Annie Baker
When I first heard about Annie Baker's play, Circle Mirror Transformation, I expected a comedy that lampoons the the seemingly silly theater games and warm-up

Warm Up with "Freeze Tag"
It's been a cold winter so far, hasn't it? In fact, as I sit here writing this blog entry, I am seriously considering investing in a Snuggie. Are you

"To Kill a Mockingbird" - The Stage Version
On a day like Martin Luther King Jr. Day, it seems appropriate to not only think about the reverend who gave his life for civil rights, but also the countless

Plays/Drama on Facebook and Twitter
One of my new year's resolutions is to become more savvy with social networking. I have been in love with blogging for almost a decade now -- but I have been

"The Little Prince" on Stage
The Little Prince is a short, sweet book by French author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. Laura K. Lawless, About.com's Guide to French, sums up the story

Stanley Kowalski the Ape?
Why does Stella stay with Stanley Kowalski? He talks down to her. He seems more interested in gambling and drinking, rather than raising a family. Worst of

Your Guide to All Things Broadway
I am a proud member of About.com's Education Channel, an online hive of buzzing, intellectual conversations, academic advice, and hopefully a bit of fun thrown

Monologue from "Uncle Vanya"
One of my favorite qualities of classic literature is its timelessness. I am endlessly amazed at how century-old plays still speak to us. They still provide

Easy Improv Games
Some drama buddies of mine are gearing up to start their own Improv Group. They have done improvisation before, but they are a bit rusty, and more than a bit

Who is the Best Actor of the Year?
First we had the Golden Globes, and next came the 17th Annual SAG Awards. I hope you aren't tired of award season yet, because the media is in high gear from

A. R. Gurney's New Play: "Black Tie"
Have the themes and story-lines of A. R. Gurney's plays become obsolete? That's what his newest play, Black Tie, seems to be asking. Gurney became renowned

Essay Help for "A Raisin in the Sun"
An activist for civil rights, Lorraine Hansberry wrote A Raisin in the Sun during the late 1950s. At the age of 29, Hansberry became the first African

"The Loss of Nameless Things"
Two days ago, playwright Oakley Hall III died of a heart attack at the age of 60. Not familiar with Oakley Hall? Sadly, you are not alone. It wasn't until

What is a British Pantomime?
In classical theater (ancient Greece and Rome) a pantomime was a comedic actor who played many different characters using very animated gestures. Later on,

New Original Monologue: The Critic
Critics can be nasty, can't they? And that is precisely the premise behind a strange little comedy called PLAY, written by yours truly (Wade Bradford) and

"Whose Life Is It Anyway?" by Brian Clark
I typically avoid getting too personal in my blog -- but I hope you'll indulge me this evening. When I first began writing for About.com, they encouraged us to

Plays by Kaufman and Hart
George S. Kaufman loved to collaborate with other writers. In fact, this drama critic-turned-playwright-turned-director wrote only one play by himself (the

One Act Drama: "The Cuban Swimmer"
The Cuban Swimmer by Micha Sanchez-Scott is a one-act family drama with spiritual and surrealistic overtones. As the play begins, 19 year old Margarita

Neil Labute's "Beauty" Trilogy
About six months ago, I stumbled upon an intriguing little article from the New York Times that lamented the growing trend of playwrights abandoning the stage

Blanche DuBois' Monologue from "Streetcar"
Every scene of Tennessee Williams' masterpiece reveals a great deal about the faded southern belle, Blanche DuBois. But no moment is more confessional than

Themes of "Our Town"
Since its debut in 1938, Thorton Wilder's Our Town has been embraced as an American classic. The play is simple enough to be studied by middle school

"The Normal Heart" by Larry Kramer
Larry Kramer's Tony nominated play, The Normal Heart, is one of the most compelling revivals to hit Broadway this year. Since the beginning of the AIDS

Michael Morpurgo's "War Horse"
Michael Morpurgo wrote his novel War Horse over three decades ago. Although well-received by a small readership, the novel wasn't exactly a best seller, and

Are You an Elphaba or a Glinda?
Lots of young Broadway fans become obsessed with their favorite characters. Maybe that's because they see themselves within the role. They can personally

The Iconic Roles of Elizabeth Taylor
Millions have been mourning the loss of legendary actress, Elizabeth Taylor. Many broadcasters have been calling her the last leading lady of Hollywood's

"The Bremen Town Musicians"
This story is a favorite gem of my childhood, one that I don't think gets told very often nowadays. It's the Bremen Town Musicians, and its one of the less

"Rotten Tomatoes" for Theater
Whew! It took along time to find this website! And by a long time, I mean about fifteen minutes, which when you are googling can seem like traveling at glacier

"Little Women" Stage Adaptations
For a single matinee this afternoon, I was very honored to play the role of Mr. Robert March, the seldom seen patriarch in an adaptation of Little Women. I

Mitch from "A Streetcar Named Desire"
When Blanche first meets the affable mama's boy, Mitch in Tennessee Williams' A Streetcar Named Desire, she asks her sister if he is a wolf - someone who

Cold Readings Vs. Prepared Monologues
Auditions are rarely the same. Casting directors are looking for all sorts of talents, acting styles, and

Robert Browning's Twisted Monologues
Have you read Robert Browning's monologue, Porphyria's Lover? It's seriously disturbing. It's the sort one might expect to find in a grizzly episode of

Andrew Bergman's "Social Security"
They say that social security is on the verge of falling apart, that it won't be around for future generations, that it will soon be out of date. Can the

"Oleanna": Student Vs. Teacher
David Mamet's controversial drama Oleanna explores the perils and pretentiousness of academia. This two-hander unfolds over the course of three meetings, each

Scene Seven: Tensions Build in "Streetcar"
In scene seven of Tennessee Williams' classic A Streetcar Named Desire, Blanche DuBois has grown accustomed to living at the Kowalski apartment, at the

"The Royal Family" by Kaufman and Ferber
The Royal Family is quaint, old fashioned fun. No, not the royal family that just had that big fancy wedding. This 1920s play by George S. Kaufman and Edna

"Ding Dong" the Improv Game
It seems I never attend an improvisation workshop without learning a new game or theater exercise. And last night was no exception. This particular improv

Audiences and Actors at Renaissance Faires
If you have eve been to a Renaissance Faire, then you already know it is a fun, immersive experience that draws you in to the days of Elizabethan England in

What is a Query Letter?
Congratulations! You have written your first play. So, now what do you do? Well, if you have the money, talent, and the rehearsal space, you can put on the

Old Fashioned Sound Effects
I used to work at a store called the Nature Company, a place that sold soothing candles, backpacks, books about animals, and my favorite item: rain sticks.

What is Reader's Theater?
Reader's Theater involves a staged reading of a play or musical. Typically, the actors read from the script (often while sitting). No movement or blocking

Analyzing Plays in the Classroom
Analyzing Plays in the Classroom

Monologue from "Great Expectations"
Following the advice of Esther Lombardi, About.com's Guide to Classic Literature, I have been making a summer reading list. As you can guess, my list

"The School for Scandal" - Director Vs Critics
reviews for school for scandal richard sheridan

That Weird Guy From the Tonys
That Weird Guy From the Tonys

The Cemetery Scene in "Our Town"
My daughters and I went to our local cemetery, accompanied by many other girl and boy scouts and their families. We were placing flags on the graves of

"The Ghosts of Darkland County"
A Stephen King & John Mellencamp musical? That's right. It has actually been in the works for over a decade. This is one of those projects that I never

What is a Scenographer?
What is a Scenographer?

Tony Award Winners on Film
tony awards on film

ActorsRez: App for Headshots / Resumes
ActorsRez: App for Headshots / Resumes

The Women of Tennessee Williams
The Women of Tennessee Williams

"Theater Historiography"
Theater Historiography

Characters from "The Boys Next Door"
Characters from The Boys Next Door

Delusion and Denial in "A Streetcar Named Desire"
Delusion and Denial in A Streetcar Named Desire

Developing a Director's Vision
Developing a Director's Vision

Glossary of Theater Terms
Glossary of Theater Terms

Essay Prompts and Study Questions
Essay Prompts and Study Questions

Shadow Puppet Theater
Shadow Puppet Theater

"The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley"
The Musical Adventures of Flat Stanley

The Boy Who Would Be Shakespeare
The Boy Who Would Be Shakespeare

Prior Walter in "Angels in America"
Prior Walter in Angels in America

Love Never Dies - The Sequel to "The Phantom of the Opera"
Reviews of Love Never Dies - The Sequel to

Reader Stories: Rehearsing a Play
Share your stories and photos about the rehearsal process.

Reader Submissions: What is the best way to raise money for your theater?
Do you know of a terrific way to raise money for your local community or regional theater? If you have a knack for creatively connecting with the public and gaining economic support for non-profit theater groups, share your ideas for fund-raising events.

Reader Stories: Discuss ghost-stories, supernatural experiences, and theater superstitions.
Is Your Theater Haunted? Share your stories of ghosts, phantoms, and things that go bump in the playhouse.

Reader Stories: Honor Your Stage Crew
Stage Hand Appreciation - Honor your stage crew - hug a techie! Share stories about your hard working stage crew.

Reader Stories: Opening Night Rituals
What do you and your cast members do on opening night?

Reader Stories: Embarrassing Moments on Stage - Theater Mishaps, Goofs, and Blunders
Have you ever forgotten a line in the middle of a performance? Did something go terribly wrong on stage? Was it humiliating? Hilarious? Both? Or, have you ever been in the audience when something goes wrong on stage? What happened and what did the cast do? Share your Embarrassing Moments on Stage - Theater Mishaps, Goofs, and Blunders.

Embarrassing Moments on Stage - Theater Mishaps, Goofs, and Blunders
Have you ever forgotten a line in the middle of a performance? Did something go terribly wrong on stage? Was it humiliating? Hilarious? Both? Or, have you ever been in the audience when something goes wrong on stage? What happened and what did the cast do? Share your Embarrassing Moments on Stage - Theater Mishaps, Goofs, and Blunders.

: Review a Theatre Book - Share Your Opinions About Theater-Related Books>
Review a Theatre Book - Share Your Opinions About Theater-Related Books

Review a Theatre Book - Share Your Opinions About Theater-Related Books
Review a Theatre Book - Share Your Opinions About Theater-Related Books

Stage Hand Appreciation - Honor Your Stage Crew
Stage Hand Appreciation - Honor your stage crew - hug a techie! Share stories about your hard working stage crew.

Actors: How Do You Develop Your Character?
Stage actors spend weeks, sometimes months rehearsing their lines and learning their blocking. But how do they go about developing their characters? Users share their stories and experiences.

Should I Major in Theater?
Users respond to the question: Should actors go to college? Should they major in theater or earn a degree in another field of study.

What Is the Funniest Comedy Ever Made?
Since comedy is so subjective, I thought I would create a User Answer page that would allow readers to share their opinions. What is the funniest play that you have ever seen or read? Tell us all about it!

Are You an "Elphaba" or a "Glinda"?
Are You an

How Do You Deal with Rejection?
Actors respond to the question:

Setting
What is a play's setting? Plays / Drama.

Favorite Twist on Shakespeare Play?
What is your favorite twist on a Shakespeare play?

Pygmalion
Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw

Pygmalion
Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw

Slapstick
Slapstick. Plays / Drama.

Youth Theater
Youth Theater. Plays / Drama.

Make Up
Make Up - Definition of Make Up. Plays / Drama.

Half
Half - Stage Manager Terms. Plays / Drama.

Apron
Apron - Stage Terminology. Plays / Drama.

Intermission
Intermission. Plays / Drama.

Juvenile
Juvenile. Plays / Drama.

First Night Audience
First Night Audience. Plays / Drama.

Mother Character Monologues - Female Monologues of "Bad" Mother Characters
A collection of monologues from the most devious and fascinating mother characters in theater.

January Play Contests - Playwriting Competitions
Start the New Year off by sending your creative genius out into the world. Check out these compelling playwriting competitions.

November Playwriting Contests - Playwright Competitions
A list of play contests with November deadlines.

December Playwriting Contests - Playwright Competitions
An annotated list of December contests for playwrights.

April Playwriting Contests - Playwright Competitions
April Playwriting Contests - Playwriting Competitions

May Playwriting Contests - Playwright Competitions
May Playwriting Contests - Playwriting Competitions

March Playwriting Contests - Playwriting Competitions
March Playwriting Contests - Playwriting Competitions

Seriously Scary Plays - Halloween Plays
Most Halloween productions are playful spoofs of worn out movie monsters. Although campy shows are a blast, there is nothing quite like getting thoroughly creeped out by a seriously bone-chilling play.

Student's Guide to Reading a Play - How to Read Dramatic Literature
What is the best way to go about reading this script? Whether it is Shakespeare or Sophocles, dramatic literature presents several challenges to a student, making the reading experience different than poetry or fiction.

5 Reasons to Support Your Local Playhouse
plays theater drama theatre playhouse playwright audience shows musicals comedy comedies dramas

Comedic Male Monologues - Funny Monologues for Actors
A collection of original Comedic Male Monologues - Funny Monologues for Actors to use in auditions and drama class.

Repertory
What is Repertory Theater? Plays / Drama.

Sandbag
What is a sandbag used for? Plays / Drama.

Scenedock
Theater storage space. Plays / Drama.

Satyr Play
What is a satyr play? Plays / Drama.

Show Report
What is a show report? What does a stage manager do?

Sight Line
What are sight lines? Plays / Drama.

Soliloquy
What is a soliloquy? Plays / Drama.

Visual Cue
What is a visual cue? Plays / Drama.

Technical Rehearsal
What is a technical rehearsal? Plays / Drama.

Thespian
What is a thespian? Plays / Drama.

Thrust Stage
What is a thrust stage? Plays / Drama.

Trap Door
What is a trap door? Plays / Drama.

Understudy
What is an understudy? Plays / Drama.

Vaudeville
What is Vaudeville? Plays / Drama.

Vomitorium
What is a vomitorium? Plays / Drama.

Wings
What are theater wings? Plays / Drama.

Work Lights
What are work lights? Plays / Drama.

Memory Play
What is a Memory Play? Plays / Drama.

Monologue
What is a monologue? Plays / Drama.

Miracle Play
What is a Miracle Play? Plays / Drama.

Musical
Definition of a musical. Plays / Drama.

Noises Off
What does noises off mean? Plays / Drama.

Off Book
What is off-book? Plays / Drama.

Opening Night
What is opening night? Plays / Drama.

Orchestra
What is an orchestra? Plays / Drama.

Paper the House
What does it mean to

Plot
What is Plot? Plays / Drama.

Practical
What is a practical? Plays / Drama.

Prompt Book
What is a prompt book? Plays / Drama.

Prop Table
What is a prop table? (Also known as

Query
What is a Query letter? Plays / Drama.

Raked Stage
What is a raked stage? Plays / Drama.

Reader's Theater
What is Reader's Theater? Plays / Drama.

Repertoire
What is a repertoire? Plays / Drama.

Hot Spot
What is a Hot Spot? Plays / Drama.

Hit
What is a hit? Plays / Drama.

Ham It Up
Ham It Up - Theater Slang Plays / Drama.

Act Drop - Victorian Theater Set Dressing
Act Drop - a rarely used set decoration that was often found during the Victorian age of theater.

Avant Garde
Avante Garde Theater - Glossary Definition

Groundling
What is a Groundling? Plays / Drama.

Inflection
What is inflection? Plays / Drama.

Jackknife Stage
What is a jackkinfe stage? Plays / Drama.

Key Light
What is a key light? Plays / Drama.

Laugh Line
What is a laugh line? Plays / Drama.

Lead
What is a lead? Plays / Drama.

Lighting Design
What is Lighting Design? Plays / Drama.

Mark Out - What is Marking Out?
What is Marking Out? Definition of

Bedroom Farce
Bedroom Farce - comedy genre. Plays / Drama.

Between Engagements
What actors say when they are not in a show.

Black Box Theater
What is a black box theater? Plays / Drama.

Black Out
Black out - Stage directions Plays / Drama.

Blind Seat
Blind Seat - the Worst seat ever!

Breakaway
What is a breakaway prop? Plays / Drama.

Cabaret
Cabaret theater. Plays / Drama.

Call Back
Call back - the audition process.

Epilogue
What is an epilogue? Plays / Drama.

Dramatic Irony
What is dramatic irony? Plays / Drama.

Dramaturg
What is a dramaturg? Plays / Drama.

Gel - Gelatin - Gel Frame
Gel - Stage tech and lighting deign glossary.

Safety Curtain
What is a safety curtain? Plays / Drama.

Beating Around the Bush Monologue - Comedic Male Monologue from "The Roommates"
In this comedic male monologue from a Wade Bradford script called

Elf Monologue - Brumbly the Elf - Comedic Monolog
Elf Monologue - Brumbly the Elf - A Comedic Monologue for men, women, and young performers.

Deus Ex Machina - God From the Machine - Lazy Conclusions and Resolutions
In greek drama, playwrights often ended the play with a god or goddess floating down to the stage, solving all of the characters' problems. This became known as deus ex machina.

'Noises Off' - A Comedy About Theater by Michael Frayn Author of 'Noises Off'
'Noises Off' is a hilarious play within a play. It is about an ambitious director and his troupe of mediocre actors. The cast and crew are putting together a silly sex comedy. It is one of the funniest comedies ever written, and a brilliant satire of life in the theater.

Warm Up Activity - Emotion Orchestra
An excellent warm-up activity that gets performers to vocalize, emote, and pay attention.

Accent Light
Lighting design term. Plays / Drama.

Drama Class for Tweens - Theater 2nd Grade Through 5th Grade
A guide to teaching drama class for 2nd through 5th grade. Most students this age are very outgoing and wildly imaginative. Make use of these qualities, and praise the students whenever they exhibit creativity.

Arthur Miller Biography - The Life and Work of Playwright Arthur Miller
Arthur Miller, The author of such works as

Profile of Edward Albee's Life and Career - Biography of Edward Albee
A brief biography of Edward Albee, American playwright - author of

Samuel French Inc. - Play Publishing Company
Samuel French has been publishing and marketing plays since 1830. They are the definitive resource for stage plays and drama instruction books.

Dictionary Improv - An Improvisation Game
To play Dictionary Improv, a moderator first selects a setting. Flipping through the dictionary, the moderator can glance at the guide words in the upper corner. The moderator does not need to choose the very first word she sees, but the first word that can function as a location or a setting.

Yes And Improv Game - Drama Exercise
The improv game

Improv Game - Genre Switching - Drama Activity
Improvisation game - perfect drama activity for improv actors who want to play around with different genres / styles of storytelling. Ideal for anyone seeking an easy, fun improv game.

Improv Game: Sit, Stand, Lean
A very phsyical and very funny improv game involving three performers.

Improv Game - Taxi Cab
An amusing, high-energy improvisation activity for ages 7 to 99. (Well, okay, I guess one-hundred year olds can play too!)

Willy Wonka Jr. - Youth Theatre Version of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory
Review of the children's theater adaptation of

Proof a Play by David Auburn


Kill
What does kill mean? Theater terms: kill.

The Iceman Cometh
A review of Eugene O'Neill's classic drama, The Iceman Cometh. What are the flaws and strengths of this play? Analyze the characters Theodore Hickman (Hickey), Larry Slade, Harry Hope, and Don Parritt. What is the meaning of the title, The Iceman Cometh?

Wardrobe
Wardrobe - Costumes and Costume Department

Producer
What is a producer? What do theater producers do?

Principal
What is a principal role? Who are the principal actors?

Opera
What is an opera? How is an opera different than a musical?

Operetta
What is an Operetta? What is the difference between an opera and an operetta.

Prop Manager
What does a prop manager do? How do I become a prop manager?

Prop
What is a prop? A definition of stage property.

Rain Box
What is a rain box? Theater sound effect for rain.

Rear Projection
What is Rear Projection? How do you create a rear projection in a play or musical?

Rehearse
What is a rehearsal? When do we rehearse? Etymology of

Royalty
What is a royaly fee? How much are royalties?

Scenographer
What is a scenographer? What do scenographers do?

Spike Tape
What is spiking the stage? How to use spike tape.

Acoustics - Sound in the Theater Auditorium
Acoustics - Sound in the Theater Auditorium

Act Warning - Stage Manager Announcement
Act Warning - Stage Manager Announcement

Actor - What is an Actor?
Definition of an actor / actress.

Actor Proof
A term that describes a play/script so good that it could be successful even if the actors are horrible.

Ad Lib - Impromptu Lines
What is an Ad Lib? Ad libs often come in handy when an actor forgets his lines.

Antagonist - Opposing the Main Character
Antagonist - Opposing the Main Character

Arras - Stage Curtains, Drops and Tapestries
Arras - Stage Curtains, Drops and Tapestries

Aside
Aside - stage direction for the actors to convey a line that is not heard by the other actors.

Ghostlight
What is a ghostlight? Why do theaters use ghostlights? Are theaters haunted?

Greasepaint
What is Greasepaint? Theater / make-up glossary.

Improvisation
What is improvisation? What is improv? Where can I find improv games?

Ingenue
What is an ingenue? Define ingenues.

Jacobean Theatre
What is Jacobean Theatre? When was was age of Jacobean Theater?

Kabuki
What is Kabuki Theater? Styles of theater in Japan.

Line Rehearsal
What is a line rehearsal? How do line rehearsals work?

Make-Up
How to put on stage make up? Theater Glossary of Make up

malapropism
Definition of malaprop and malapropism. What is malapropism? What is a malaprop? Who is Mrs. Malaprop?

Melodrama
Melodrama? What is a melodrama? Where can I find the best melodramas?

Morality Play
What are morality plays? Definition of a morality play from the middle ages.

Muse
What is a Muse? Who are the nine Muses?

Audition - Also Known As the "Try Out"
Audition - Also Known As the

Backstage
What is backstage? Where is backstage?

Ballyhoo
Ballyhoo - figure eight motion of a spotlight.

Backdrop
What is a backdrop? Theater glossary / stage terms.

Backlight or Backlighting
Backlight is lighting that is placed upstage.

Baffle - Technical Theater Term
Baffle - Technical Theater Terms

Bit Part
Bit Part - a theater term for a small role in a play.

Blocking - To Block a Scene
Blocking - stage directions: an actor's movement on stage.

Booth
Booth - the theater home of the lighting and sound equipiment.

Break Character
What happens when you break character?

Stage Directions - Stage Right and Stage Left
How do you tell the difference between stage right and stage left? Upstage and downstage? Here is a handy diagram that clearly details the different stage directions.

Call Time
Call Time - stage manager terminology.

Cameo
Cameo - In acting, making a

Casting Director
What is a casting director? The duties of a casting director.

Catharsis
Catharsis - Drama term from Greek theater.

Chew the Scenery
Chew the Scenery - an old theater saying about one's limited acting ability.

Climax
Climax - the point of highest tension.

Comedy
Comedy - satire, parody, slapstick, humor.

Costume Designer
What does a costume designer do? Duties of a costume designer.

Curtain Call
Curtain Call - theater terms and drama glossary.

Commedia dell'Arte
What is Commedia dell'Arte? A description of early Italian comedies.

Deliver
Delivery - Theater terminology.

Dark
Dark - Theater terms and definitions. What does it mean when a theater is

Deus Ex Machina


Dialogue
What is dialogue? Learn about: Movie dialogue and dialog from a play. Conversations between the characters.

Profile of Anton Chekhov's Life and Career - Biography of Anton Chekhov
A brief biography of Anton Chekhov, Russian playwright and short story writer.

Entr'Acte
What is an entr'acte? Musical terminology.

Exit
What is an exit? A glossary of theater terms.

George Spelvin - Pseudonym for Actors
Who is George Spelvin? A traditional pseudonym used in American Theater.

Exposition - Expository Scene
What is exposition? What is an expository scene?

Naturalism
What is naturalism in the Theater? What is naturalism in literature?

Astrov's Monologue from "Uncle Vanya" (Written by Anton Chekhov) - Monologue for a Male Actor
In the first act of Anton Chekhov's play,

DVD Improv Game
DVD Improv Game is a fun improvisation game for improv performers who want to create a funny, high energy scene. It's a good activity for a short improv, or for the longer

Sound FX Improv Game - Improvising Sound Effects
Sound FX Improv Game - Improvising Sound Effects: An improvisational drama activity that involves actors generating impromptu sound effects for fellow performers.

Limelight
What is limelight? What does it mean to be in the limelight?

Gauze
What is gauze? How is gauze used in lighting design?

Finale - What is a finale? Musical terminology
Finale - What is a finale? Musical terminology.

Upstaging
What is upstaging? How do you upstage someone?

Techie
Techie: Nickname for Stage technician

Spotlight
What is a followspot? Origins of spotlights in theater.

Pratfall
What is a pratfall? How do you do a pratfall?

Pyrotechnician
What is a pyrotechnician? What are pyro technics? What does a pyrotechnician do?

Proscenium
What is a Proscenium? Definition of theater and stage terms.

Choreography
Choreography - the art of dance.

Pantomime
What is pantomime? What is a pantomime play?

Denouement
Denouement - the resolution of a play.

Piper's Opera House
Piper's Opera House served as the entertainment center of the thirving mining town: Virginia City, Nevada.

"L" Theater Glossary - From "Laugh Line" to "Line Rehearsal"


Plays / Drama, - Articles
An index of Articles for the Plays / Drama guide site.

Plays / Drama, - Articles
An index of Articles for the Plays / Drama guide site.

Plays / Drama, - Articles
An index of Articles for the Plays / Drama guide site.

Playwrights
Discover the struggles and triumphs of playwrights throughout the ages.