Monologues… LIVING THE ROLE: Where, Why?

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*New* Santa Improv: Living the Moments Class

***First this tutorial page isn’t a offer of goods for sale, or a way to build a list***
I’m giving away my time FREE… with a mini course of LIVING THE ROLE. These are acting tutorials for building a living character. Santa!

In these acting tutorials the monologue will help us how to best find our character and their reason for living… being there, being alive. If we can do it with a short monologue, we can do it with a whole brilliant show.

I found my monologue the other day… new to me. I’ve never read this one before. Here it is…


The Hours (2006) by David Hare

Richard: What are you doing here? You’re early!

I had this wonderful idea. I needed some light. I needed to let in some light. I had this fantastic notion. I took a Xanax and a Ritalin together. It had never occurred to me.

Don’t come near me!

It seemed to me I needed to let in some light. What do you think? I cleared away all the windows. I also need some air… I’ll just open this big window. (Opens the window.) Wow it’s high up here.

Stay back!

I don’t think I want to be at this party anymore, Love. But you all still want me to face the hours, don’t you? I mean the hours here at the party, and the hours after that. Do I still have good days in front of me? Not really. It’s kind of you to think, but it’s not really true.

(Bad coughing.)

My sweet love, it’s you. I’ve stayed alive for you. But now you have to let me go. No, wait, wait, wait….

Tell me a story. Like that morning when you walked out of that old house, remember all those mornings ago. And you were eighteen, and maybe I was nineteen. I was nineteen years old and I had never seen anything so beautiful. You, coming out of a glass door early in the morning, still sleepy. Isn’t it strange? The most ordinary morning in anybody’s life. Those are the one you remember.

I’m afraid I can’t stay at the party, Love. You’ve been so good to me, girlfriend. I love you. I don’t think anyone could have been happier than how you made me.

It’s time to fly.

(Richard falls dead at that moment.)

As you can see I didn’t go with a funny one, this is dramatic. You can pick your’s to be either way, none is better. I picked this one because it looked challenging and had well defined story arcs, (a beginning, middle and climax.)

Look for a monologue that speaks to you. You know what the character in it is talking about and you feel the emotional path. It’s important that you understand where they are coming from. Choosing a monologue that you have no connection with makes you struggle with the text, the character and yourself.

You don’t have to have a long one to read, just one that will give you a chance to move through a few emotional arcs.

What are ARCS? Think of those as emotional high points in the monologue. Your character either has an “ah ha” moment or something or person pushes their emotional buttons… conflict!

Conflict is good, it make for brilliant story telling. In our “real” lives we try to avoid it as much as possible. For very good reasons… it can be messy, stop us from moving forward and sometimes it can hurt us. Here it’s a helpful thing. We actors need conflict and the audience eats up conflict each week, just watch TV.

Once you have a good monologue for yourself… start looking for all the Arcs (emotional highs) and mark where they are. Underline keywords that you feel are the most important in each sentence.

*Big hint here… you can’t be wrong on any of this. Your take on the meaning of the monologue is brilliant, one of a kind and most importantly… yours!

If you want, please share your monologue with us in the comments below. *<|;-}])>

Next… Tools of the Trade

*The photo is from TEN LITTLE INDAINS, also known as AND THEN THERE WERE NONE an Agatha Christie mystery. I was living the role of Bore in that show. I’m the guy with the hat. I had the great fun and honor of doing this role twice.