Stuck on what to do for a monologue?

Honestly I don’t know if I’ll post this. I was just thinking a couple of things and I’m seeing if I write them down if they make any sense.

I was thinking about anime, and I remembered a time where I had no idea what to do for my monologue for BTEC Drama (I’m year 11). It had to be from a published piece; so famous movie monologues weren’t allowed. But, I found a way to still do something I loved. Manga, comics and books still counted as published pieces. And as an otaku, that opened a lot of doors. In the end I chose one from Death Note, and another from Antigone (a play, not a manga).

Anyway, back to what this is really about. How to choose a monologue. Before I start, let me just make one thing clear; don’t use a monologue book.

I’m just going to tell you the questions I ask myself when coming up with an idea. The first is: ‘How challenging do I want it to be?’ Your answer to this should then help choose what your characters personality is, and the scenario. (Easy being a character very much like yourself in an everyday scenario, hard being your opposite in the middle of a battle in fucking Middle Earth or something). Secondly, you have to ask yourself whether you want to explore new texts, or do something that you’ve perhaps analysed before, or just genuinely know very well. Of course, choosing something you know is easier, as well as it narrowing down your choices. Thirdly, make sure you like it.  Don’t just say ‘oh, it’ll be alright’. Make sure you know you can really get into it. If not, look again. And don’t think that you like it just by reading the monologue itself; read the book or play (or synopsis) at least. Know your character. Know the feeling you want. And be honest with yourself. Do you really think that character is right for you? Sure, you may want to try something new or challenge yourself. But remember; in the world of acting, an actor just sometimes can’t do a character. And that’s not because they can’t act. It’s purely because it’s not right for them. Fourthly, keep in mind the feel of the monologue. Choosing one that’s sad or comical could make the difference. Like before; one may not be your best suit. Don’t feel like you have to do a tragedy from Shakespeare’s works; feel free to do something light. You don’t want to make your teacher depressed, especially if they’ve seen others that were similar.

The main things to keep in mind here are; difficulty, time period, scenario, feel and back ground. Also don’t be afraid to go outside the box. This could be your chance to show who you are; if you’re nerdy, find one like that if you want. If you’re a tomboy; do one you can relate to in that way. Read your monologue like you, as a person, would say it, and hear how that sounds. When I did Death Note I actually did a duologue. But it was between me and a ‘God’, that only my character could see and hear. So I used that, and made it a monologue. This gave me the chance to show how I could react to things, and I could test my ability to ‘see what isn’t there’.

You probably knew all of this. But, I hope it was a help. 🙂


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