Before you even begin to perform a monologue, there are three things you need to know:
- What the monologue is about
- Who you are talking to
- Why you are saying the words
Knowing the answers to these questions will help you identify the correct emotions needed to make your monologue sound believable instead of just memorized. In my book, “Mom! I Want To Be A Star,” I explain in detail what I mean by “Memorizing is not acting!” You should not begin a monologue without taking these three things into consideration.
I was working with a girl, during one of my private Skype sessions, on her monologue for an upcoming audition. Her line was, “I can’t believe you are telling me this!” I could tell that she just memorized the line without asking herself what “someone told her.” I asked her “What happened that made you say that? Who are you talking to? Why are you saying that line?” She did not know. I explained to her that you need to know in order to attach the correct emotion to your line. Are you happy because your parents are buying you a car? Are you sad because your boyfriend broke up with you? Are you angry because your parents are getting a divorce? Kids, understand what you’re saying and why!
We continued to work on every line of the monologue in the same way. Once she understood this process, it completely changed how she was delivering her lines. She sounded believable because she understood what the monologue was about, who she was talking to and why she was saying the words.
Remember, if I can tell you’re acting, that’s not acting!