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How to act in a play

It is common in literature classes to write papers about plays, such as the works of famous playwrights like Shakespeare, Ibsen and Sophocles, to name just a few. When writing about plays, as well as all works of literature, it is important to know the guidelines of how to properly write the titles when referring to them in your paper and listing them in your works cited page. Since papers about literature are typically written in MLA format, you should know the MLA rules for writing play titles.

Step 1

Determine the length of the play. The rules for titles of literature depend on the length of the work, and a plays can vary greatly in length. A play that consists of only one act is considered a short play, while a play that has more than one act is considered a long play.

Step 2

Place the titles of one-act plays in quotation marks. MLA calls for titles of short works, such as articles and short poems, to be put in quotation marks. One-act plays fall in this category.

Step 3

Italicize the title of longer plays. MLA calls for the title of longer works, such as books and films, to be italicized. Plays longer than one act are considered long works and should be italicized.

This is the meat and potatoes portion… AND the most difficult part of writing a screenplay. Most mediocre and flawed screenplays are plagued by slow or meandering second acts. Keep in mind the main tension – and that your character should always be on the path to resolving that tension.

The second act begins right after the lock-in: the moment when the character is stuck in the predicament and main tension – it is too late to turn back, so he/she must go forward. Now the character aims towards the goal, the objective, and he/she has the first meeting of the obstacles and antagonists or circumstances, always with rising actions.

The first sequence usually presents the alternative solutions. What are the choices? What should be done? And the character selects one alternative, and if it should be the worst one, then he selects another one, and in the meantime, the rest of the alternatives are eliminated. Then the character uses one of the ways to solve the predicament, and it seems to work, and that’s usually the first culmination or midpoint.

But it’s not that simple, because there are consequences of things that happened before that he didn’t take into consideration. He offended somebody. He didn’t do things that he was supposed to do. He forgot about things. You bring those things back in the second part of the act, and at that time they can be entered almost without motivation, because anything that works against your character at that time is acceptable. Any accident, any coincidence is fine because it makes his predicament worse, and therefore we enjoy it. Also it helps to explore the validity of the desire of the dream.

ACT TWO: ESSENTIAL ELEMENTS

OBSTACLES: The second act is all about obstacles. It elaborates in great detail and intensity on the difficulties and obstacles the hero faces as he or she struggles to achieve his or her goal. Just when we think the situation can’t get worse, it does. And when there is no way that our hero can get out of the jam, he does, only to end up in a worse jam. Basically, each sequence centers around a new obstacle or obstacles of increasing difficulty.

FIRST ATTEMPTS: Now that the character is locked-in, he makes his first attempts to solve the problem. This is usually the simplest, easiest manner to resolve the problem, and these attempts usually fail.

RAMIFICATIONS: It is important to show the ramification of the attempts, which must result in an increase in complications.

ACTION: Every move the character makes traps him even more. Each actions leads to more entrapment. Be merciless on the character.

SUB-PLOT: A solid sub-plot that carefully intertwines with the main tension in both plot and theme will be a great channel in which to relate the character’s emotions (in regards to the main tension).

FIRST CULMINATION: This is the midpoint of the film. If our hero is to win in the end, this then is the first time the character finds a solution that seems to work. It is a victory. If the script is a tragedy, however, this often a low point for the character.

MIDPOINT MIRROR: The first culmination and ending of the film usually mirror each other: both victories or both failures.

MIDPOINT CONTRAST: The first culmination (Midpoint) and the main culmination (End of Act II) are usually in contrast with each other.

NEW ATTEMPTS: By the first culmination, our hero has failed in his/her first attempts but in failure, realizes the weight of the issue and becomes aware of the correct method in which to resolve the main tension. He/she then can begin new attempts, still faced with new obstacles, that get him/her closer to resolving the issue.

CHARACTER CHANGE: Throughout the second act, the main character starts changing, learning, and developing, or at least intense pressure is put on the character to change, and that change will manifest in the third act.

MAIN CULMINATION: this is the end of the second act and the point where the character sees that what he/she thinks he/she has been doing is not what he/she has been doing. The tension is at the highest point, and this is the decisive turning point. You must convince the audience that their worst fears are going to come true. This moment will change the main character in some way.

FIRST RESOLUTION: This resolution of the second act tension often spins the character(s) into the third act. (Luke Skywalker and Han Solo rescue Princess Leia from the clutches of evil Vader… but they still have to destroy the Death Star.)

How to act in a play Streaming Rights Available

Clue: On Stage by Sandy Rustin and 2 others

  • Comedy
  • |
  • 90 – 100 minutes
  • 5 f, 5 m (10-20 actors possible: 5-10 f, 5-10 m)

It’s a dark and stormy night, and you’ve been invited to a very unusual dinner party. Each of the guests has an alias, the butler offers a. Read more

It’s a dark and stormy night, and you’ve been invited to a very unusual dinner party. Each of the guests has an alias, the butler offers a. Read more

How to act in a play

10 Ways to Survive Life In a Quarantine (one-act): A Stay-At-Home Play by Don Zolidis

  • Comedy
  • |
  • 30 – 40 minutes
  • 22 either (6-22 actors possible: 0-22 f, 0-22 m)

If you’re spending a long time at home, it can be a challenge to keep yourself occupied. Luckily, 10 Ways to Survive Life in a Quarantine is full. Read more

If you’re spending a long time at home, it can be a challenge to keep yourself occupied. Luckily, 10 Ways to Survive Life in a Quarantine is full. Read more

How to act in a play Streaming Rights Available

Check Please by Jonathan Rand

  • Comedy
  • |
  • 25 – 35 minutes
  • 7 f, 7 m (4-26 actors possible: 2-13 f, 2-13 m)

Dating can be hard. Especially when your date happens to be a raging kleptomaniac, or your grandmother’s bridge partner, or a mime. Check Please. Read more

Dating can be hard. Especially when your date happens to be a raging kleptomaniac, or your grandmother’s bridge partner, or a mime. Check Please. Read more

How to act in a play Streaming Rights Available

10 Ways to Survive the Zombie Apocalypse by Don Zolidis

  • Comedy
  • |
  • 30 – 35 minutes
  • 5 f, 3 m, 2 either (8-24 actors possible: 5-13 f, 3-11 m)

It’s the end of the world and hordes of rampaging zombies are about to kill you. What do you do? Try your hand at kung fu against the undead. Read more

It’s the end of the world and hordes of rampaging zombies are about to kill you. What do you do? Try your hand at kung fu against the undead. Read more

How to act in a play Streaming Rights Available

Clue: On Stage (High School Edition) by Sandy Rustin and 2 others

  • Comedy
  • |
  • 90 – 100 minutes
  • 5 f, 5 m (5-20 actors possible: 5-10 f, 5-10 m)

It’s a dark and stormy night, and you’ve been invited to a very unusual dinner party. Each of the guests has an alias, the butler offers a. Read more

It’s a dark and stormy night, and you’ve been invited to a very unusual dinner party. Each of the guests has an alias, the butler offers a. Read more

How to act in a play

Help Desk: A Stay-At-Home Play by Don Zolidis

  • Comedy
  • |
  • 30 – 40 minutes
  • 4 either (4-30 actors possible: 4-30 f, 4-30 m)

When you call the help desk, you’re looking for a solution – but your problems might just be beginning. Whether you’re getting shamed about your. Read more

When you call the help desk, you’re looking for a solution – but your problems might just be beginning. Whether you’re getting shamed about your. Read more

How to act in a play Available as eScript

The Alibis by Jonathan Dorf and 6 others

  • Comedy
  • |
  • 110 – 130 minutes
  • 3 f, 2 m, 10 either (10-55 actors possible: 3-53 f, 2-52 m)

We challenged eight playwrights to find the comedy in crime in this rogue’s gallery of ten-minute plays wrapped in a classic whodunnit. When. Read more

We challenged eight playwrights to find the comedy in crime in this rogue’s gallery of ten-minute plays wrapped in a classic whodunnit. When. Read more

How to act in a play Streaming Rights Available

The Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon (one-act) by Don Zolidis

  • Comedy
  • |
  • 35 – 50 minutes
  • 1 f, 1 m, 3 either (5-20 actors possible: 1-19 f, 1-19 m)

Two narrators attempt to recreate all 209 of the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm in a wild, fast-paced extravaganza. To make it more difficult. Read more

Two narrators attempt to recreate all 209 of the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm in a wild, fast-paced extravaganza. To make it more difficult. Read more

How to act in a play

Bad Auditions. On Camera – A Stay-At-Home Play by Ian McWethy

  • Comedy
  • |
  • 30 – 40 minutes
  • 13 either (4-13 actors possible: 0-13 f, 0-13 m)

A casting director has one day to find an actor to fill the role of a lawyer in a crime procedural. But what seems like a simple task proves. Read more

A casting director has one day to find an actor to fill the role of a lawyer in a crime procedural. But what seems like a simple task proves. Read more

How to act in a play Streaming Rights Available

The Internet is Distract–OH LOOK A KITTEN! by Ian McWethy

  • Comedy
  • |
  • 30 – 35 minutes
  • 5 f, 3 m, 12 either (5-18 actors possible: 5-17 f, 3-15 m)

Micah only has twenty minutes to finish her paper on The Great Gatsby. She just needs to check a few facts on the internet first. Unfortunately. Read more

Micah only has twenty minutes to finish her paper on The Great Gatsby. She just needs to check a few facts on the internet first. Unfortunately. Read more

How to act in a play Streaming Rights Available

It’s a Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play (full-length version) adapted by Joe Landry

  • Comedy
  • Drama
  • |
  • 75 – 90 minutes
  • 2 f, 3 m (5-25 actors possible: 1-10 f, 1-15 m)

This beloved American holiday classic comes to captivating life as a live 1940s radio broadcast. With the help of an ensemble that brings a few. Read more

This beloved American holiday classic comes to captivating life as a live 1940s radio broadcast. With the help of an ensemble that brings a few. Read more

Many aspiring actors dream of having a career in Hollywood, and with time, training, dedication, passion, and patience, that vision can become a reality. If you want to become a successful film or television actor, there are some deliberate steps you can take to start making your way down that path.

Learn How to Act

The best Hollywood actors understand that acting is a craft. Regardless of credentials, many of these seasoned performers continue to work with coaches and mentors to hone their craft because they know there is always room to grow. As an aspiring actor, you can take a cue and sign up for a wide variety of acting classes. Work with as many styles and different groups as possible—try it all. From Shakespeare to comedy, and improv to cinema vérité, the more you know, the more well-rounded and versatile you will be to take on any roles that come your way.

Go Where the Work Is

New York and Los Angeles are where most of the casting directors work, live, and cast many of the shows shot in the U.S. and Canada. Recently, however, Atlanta has emerged as one of the hotspots for film and television gigs, primarily fueled by the opening of Tyler Perry Studios—one of the largest film production studios in the U.S.

Georgia is also known for providing lucrative tax incentives for filmmakers, so many choose to cast their work in the state. Although you don't necessarily need to move to those cities, you stand the best chance of being cast in a role if you're there.

To help you find casting directors, and vice versa, an acting agency is the ideal conduit. Here are the top acting agencies that can help lead you to a career in film, TV, and commercials.

Commit Yourself

The best actors are those who are willing to invest their time and let themselves be 100% consumed by the role they are playing, both physically and emotionally. This sort of dedication can take its toll on relationships, however. It’s hard enough to maintain connections if you’re devoting all your time and energy to your passion; it's even harder if that passion requires you to shoot on location for months at a time and be on set for up to 20 hours a day.

Don't Burn Bridges

Getting ahead in Hollywood is all about developing relationships and sowing seeds. You should always strive to be personable because you never know who might be able to help you down the road. An assistant you worked with years ago, for instance, might become a casting director, film producer, or talent agent someday. You can bet they’ll remember who was nice to them along the way. It’s never a good idea to burn bridges.

Be Persistent

There is one general rule in Hollywood: Talent won't get you there, but persistence just might. Actors who are gritty and unrelenting likely have a better chance of success than the Juilliard-trained actor who waits in their apartment for an opportunity to come knocking. There is a lengthy list of actors who worked less-than-ideal day jobs until they got full time acting gigs.

It took Harrison Ford more than a decade working as a carpenter—which is how he recaptured the attention of George Lucas, who had previously cast him in "American Graffiti"—before he landed his breakthrough role as Han Solo in "Star Wars."   John Hamm waited tables as he took on smaller parts and went on many auditions before he earned fame as Don Draper at "Mad Men."  

Break Through Your Range

For years, Clint Eastwood epitomized the tough guy; Meg Ryan was the cutesy, girl next door; and Tom Hanks was the goofy, nice guy. These actors made their name playing specific roles because they found a niche that worked for them. Later, they were able to reach beyond their initial range. Finding your range is essential when you're getting your start. It shows casting directors what you’re capable of as an actor.

It's just as important to move beyond your initial range by continuing to learn new acting techniques. Doing improvisation can help extend your range. It is one of the few forms of acting where you have the absolute freedom to discover where your talent lies and where your repertoire could use some work.

Seek out as many acting opportunities as you can. From small plays to student films, you may be surprised how many seemingly insignificant opportunities can be catalysts to your entire career.

Have Patience

True overnight success stories in Hollywood are rare. It may seem like an actor or actress is entirely unknown one day and basking in the limelight the next, but the reality is that years of hard work and preparation earned them the accolades. Be patient—you never know when your break is going to come. At least three stars of "Orange Is the New Black" can attest to this notion:

  • Uzo Aduba, who plays Suzanne "Crazy Eyes" Warren
  • Datscha Polanco, who acts as Dayanara "Daya" Diaz
  • Diane Guerrero, who portrayed Maritza Ramos

All three actresses nearly gave up acting entirely before being cast in the award-winning series. Aduba was the closest to moving on. In the September 2016 issue of Essence, she related how she landed her role 45-minutes after deciding to stop acting.   Meanwhile, Polanco kept working another full-time job during the filming of the first season, unsure of how things were going to pan out.  

And then there's the story of Chrissy Metz, who plays the role of Kate Pearson in "This Is Us." Frustrated by fruitless efforts to land significant roles, she nearly moved back to Florida before getting cast in the critically acclaimed NBC series. Living on unemployment at the time, she famously had less than a dollar in her bank account.   Her patience ended up paying off, and with enough persistence, yours can too.

It can be a lot of fun – and laughter and sex is never a bad combo.

How to act in a play

How to act in a play

Have you ever wanted to role play being someone else? Not just in the FML-can-I-be-rich-and-famous-already way, either. We’re talking about your sexual fantasies, those secret moments when you imagine yourself right in centre of the action of the erotic fiction you’re reading or porn you’re watching.

Any kind of sex-related or kinky role play starts from one place – your imagination. But before you do anything, it’s important to have a proper chat with your partner(s) about your expectations, boundaries, safe words. Only ever role play with a partner(s) you trust and are able to communicate with openly and honestly. So, all that playing dress up or pretending to be a superhero you did as a kid was the innocent version of what you can do now. Get elaborate or keep it simple – it’s all about doing what turns you on.

Sex experts at Kinkly explain how to get started.

How to act in a play

Think about your fantasies

What turns you on, in your head? Is it the hot teacher you used to have in college? Maybe you wish your massage therapist would take things a little farther when you’re covered only by a towel. Have you read erotic fiction and wished you were a vampire or a Viking?

In role play, you’re limited only by your imagination. Think of any scenario that turns you on even if it’s just the excitement of a first date with someone you’ve been lusting over. Your dirty thoughts are sexy inspiration for all your role play games.

Talk about your fantasies

Some role play fantasies you can spring on your partner, like pretending to meet them in a bar. Others need a bit of preparation. If you’ve got a kinky role play fantasy featuring leather, whips, and a mermaid (don’t worry – there’s a sexy costume for that) . well, you’re going to need to give your partner an early heads-up.

Start simple with “I can’t stop fantasising about…” Then, gauge your partner’s interest. If they perk up a little or get into the fantasy with you, take it to the next level. Say something like “Can you be the prisoner, and I’ll be the guard?” or whatever your fantasy may be.

How to act in a play

Make it kinky. or don’t

Some role play fantasies are inherently about power – the teacher and student, or officer and criminal. One of you has power over the other and can “have your way” with the other. It’s a great way to explore a kinky power exchange dynamic in a more playful way, without some of the seriousness and intensity.

But, not all role play scenarios have to be that way. Pretending to pick up your partner at a bar, or acting like you’re on a blind date lets you be someone you don’t think you are – aggressive, bold, overtly sexual – in a safe way.

Start slow

For many people, role play can feel a little silly. You might feel awkward or uncomfortable “playing pretend” even if the idea of it turns you on. Start small and slow.

How to act in a play

Try sexting your partner about your fantasy first. This way you can play and be imaginative without looking at the other person or saying anything out loud. For some people, this is all the role play you may need or want. For others, once you get comfortable typing it, it’ll be much easier to say your “lines” in a role play scene.

Get dressed up . or don’t

Imagination is a powerful thing, so costumes in role play aren’t a requirement. If you’re broke or uninterested in wigs, hats, and costumes, go ahead and skip it. But if dressing up helps you get into “character,” go for it. If you’re not sure what to go for, there’s always the classic French maid, nurse, and secretary. And, plenty of plus size options too.

You can buy sexy costumes online, from adult stores or costume shops, or you can use what you have in your wardrobe to put together the perfect outfit for your character. Dressing up isn’t required, but it can definitely make your scene feel more real. It can also be great fun.

How to act in a play

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What should you say?

The first few “lines” of your role play might feel awkward or silly – and that’s OK. This is a new game, and no one expects you to be perfect at the beginning. It’s alright to laugh and fumble through at first. If it’s a strong fantasy for you or your partner, the words will come and then you can follow each other’s lead.

You may know exactly how you want your fantasy to end. If you do, you should also let your partner know. But you may want to be surprised at what happens, in which case, imagine what your character would say or what you’d want them to say, and go for it. No theatre critic will be there to tell you if you did a good job. If you end the scene naked, sweaty, and satisfied, you’ve performed well!

Be open with your partner and let your imagination lead the way

Role play in the bedroom ( or bar, hotel , or anywhere else) can be an amazing outlet to share your sexiest fantasies, try new things, and explore your kinks. It can also be a lot of fun leading to laughter and sex, which is never a bad combination!

The important thing is to be open with your partner and let your imagination lead the way. Be willing to be silly and make mistakes – this is supposed to be fun! And, as you get better at getting into character and letting go of your inhibitions, you might be surprised at where your fantasies take you.

Are you looking for original play scripts to use in your classroom? Drama teachers and directors may use these one-act plays for free for educational purposes.

Written by playwright Wade Bradford, this collection of short plays primarily includes ​comedies. Your young cast and students can hone their skills on these scenarios that include time travel, talking turkeys, and even a little romance. ​

Each of Bradford's play scripts included here is royalty-free, so you can use them in your classroom or amateur theater productions without worry. Below you will also find a resource for radio drama scripts that can be used with character exercises that emphasize voice for action.

'12 Angry Pigs'

The 10-minute play “12 Angry Pigs” is a parody of the famous play “12 Angry Men.” It not only offers a humorous opportunity for actors of all levels, but it also provides a glimpse into the jury and justice system. Of course, there’s a little allusion to “The Three Little Pigs” mixed in as well.

The play is educational and accessible to a variety of students. "12 Angry Pigs" has been performed all over the world, including Argentina, Australia, Japan, and the Netherlands.

'Back to the Summer'

Perfect for young performers, "Back to the Summer" is a quick and witty play that gives your class a lot of creative freedom. Add your own soundtrack, have students write jokes—do whatever you like to create a positive experience for your young actors.

The premise of the play follows three friends who take a time machine back to the 1980s. This sets a chain of events in motion that stirs up historical figures from the golden age of pirates, the old West, and ancient Egypt. Even Thomas Edison makes a brief appearance. It is a fun romp through time that actors of all levels of experience will enjoy.

'A History of Messy Rooms'

This short play for children is based on Wade Bradford's picture book "Why Do I Have to Make My Bed? Or, a History of Messy Rooms." What begins as a simple question turns into a history lesson that examines the lives (and chores) of children throughout the ages.

In the play, the two main characters—Mom and Jamie—are visited by children from various eras. It is an easy, fun, short production that allows young actors to explore simple dialogue and action.

'Montana Jones and the Gymnasium of Doom'

This play is written specifically for performers between the ages of 10 and 14. "Montana Jones and the Gymnasium of Doom" is a simple one-act comedy that kids of that age will relate to.

Two friends sit at the bus stop, lamenting their boring life in a new middle school, wishing for the days when they could play at recess and make up pretend adventures. That's when Montana Jones, part-time explorer and full-time fool, swoops in, taking the kids on a journey to discover their school in a whole new way.

'Cinema Limbo'

This two-person scene takes place at a movie theater box office. Therefore, "Cinema Limbo" requires just two office chairs for the stage set.

Because of the romantic dynamics, this is a play that may make some teenagers uncomfortable. But such discomfort can be a part of all acting, and this piece may provide the opportunity for some students to experience working with more difficult material. The simple plot: Employees Vicky and Joshua are having a friendly conversation that suddenly turns romantic (despite the fact that she already has a boyfriend).

'Terri and the Turkey'

The holiday play "Terri and the Turkey" tells the story of an unfortunate turkey that realizes that today is Thanksgiving. Guess who has a date with the chopping block?

Lucky for him, the turkey meets a kind-hearted girl named Terri who wants to give him a second chance at life. Your drama students will get a chuckle out of the ending, so you might want to surprise them by doing the first reading aloud together.

Radio Drama Scripts

The “Generic Radio Drama” website has created a wonderful list of classic radio drama scripts. Although radio drama and live theater are two very different art forms, these scripts can be excellent learning resources for focusing on voice and dialogue. Material exists from the following shows:

  • "Abbot and Costello"
  • "Flash Gordon"
  • "Little Orphan Annie"
  • "The Lone Ranger"

If the kids are bored or looking for a fun game to play, charades is a great game option. Here you will find 101 good charades ideas for kids to act out. With charades, there isn’t much of a mess and everyone can play right from where they are; no running and nobody gets wet. Charades can be played indoors or out, at home, at camp, or at parties. All you need is a bunch of charades topics and ideas and you’re ready to play.

How to Play Charades

You can prepare the categories and ideas ahead of time or you can let the kids create them when they’re ready to play. It’s easy, just write the ideas on strips of paper, put them in a basket, bowl, or a hat, and then allow each person to draw one on their turn. The categories can be anything from objects to people, and if you’re playing with children who can’t read, you can use flash cards with pictures on them.

You can play in teams or alone, but it might be easier with teams when younger children are playing too. Consider mixing in all age groups to both teams to make it fair play for everyone. Once your teams are divided, toss all the slips of paper into the basket and shake them up. Be sure you have an even amount of ideas for each team.

Choose the team with the youngest person to go first. If there are several people with the same age you can flip a coin or have them guess a number between 1 and 10 to determine which team should start the game.

Playing the game charades, the traditional way, taking turns, each player draws an idea from the basket and pantomimes using gestures to try and describe the idea to the other teammates. When the team guesses correctly they receive a point and play is handed over to the other team. Play continues until the team with the most points wins. (The points or game length should be determined prior to the beginning of the game).

Tips for Playing Charades with Kids

  • Use picture flashcards for younger players who can’t read.
  • Instead of using hand gestures to describe the category, simply say what it is i.e. an animal, an object, a character, etc.
  • Kids easily recognize colors, so instead of referring to the teams as numbers consider making the two teams into colors such as team red and team blue.
  • Remind children that pantomime means to describe with gestures and not words.
  • Set a timer allowing a certain amount of time to describe the idea and when the time is up, the turn goes to the next team.
  • This is a great team building exercise for kids, so encourage them to play in teams rather than as individuals.

Now that you have this game in mind, and you know how to play, you might be wondering what categories and ideas would be good for your group of kids. No worries, we’ve got you covered. We created a list of categories and ideas to help you get started. You can use these just like they are, you can tweak them a bit to fit the ages of your group, or you can add more to each category.

We came up with animals, objects, actions, places, people, emotions, toys, games, cartoons, and TV shows. We included things that will be easy to understand, and you can replace each one with a picture card if you choose.

Now, go gather the kids for the best game night ever!

The following is a list of 101 charades ideas for kids:

How to act in a play

Animal Charades Ideas for Kids

  1. Chicken
  2. Horse
  3. Dog
  4. Snake
  5. Rabbit
  6. Cat
  7. Elephant
  8. Bird
  9. Cow
  10. Pig
  11. Turtle
  12. Frog
  13. Kangaroo
  14. Monkey
  15. T-Rex

How to act in a play

Object Charade Ideas

  1. Blanket
  2. Bread
  3. Stairs
  4. Tablet
  5. Shoes
  6. Grass
  7. Ice Cream Cone
  8. Fire Truck
  9. Chair
  10. Laptop
  11. Pillow
  12. Airplane
  13. Guitar
  14. Drums
  15. Hula Hoop

Actions Charade Ideas

  1. Swimming
  2. Singing
  3. Brushing Your Teeth
  4. Bouncing a Ball
  5. Getting Dressed
  6. Blowing a Kiss
  7. Reading a Book
  8. Writing
  9. Playing Baseball
  10. Playing Basketball
  11. Washing Your Hair
  12. Making Your Bed
  13. Washing the Dishes
  14. Watering the Flowers
  15. Fishing

How to act in a play

Places Charades Ideas

  1. School
  2. Church
  3. Home
  4. McDonald’s
  5. Amusement Park
  6. Park
  7. Arcade
  8. Zoo

Movies and Characters Charades Ideas for Kids

  1. Harry Potter
  2. Frozen
  3. Cars
  4. Shrek
  5. Batman
  6. Finding Nemo
  7. Cookie Monster
  8. Dora the Explorer
  9. Mickey Mouse
  10. Hello Kitty
  11. The Lion King
  12. The Cat in the Hat
  13. A Zombie
  14. Pinocchio

People Charades Ideas

  1. Mom
  2. Dad
  3. Teacher
  4. Pirate
  5. Witch
  6. Grandma
  7. Grandpa
  8. Chef
  9. Doctor
  10. Soldier

Emotions Charades Ideas

  1. Surprised
  2. Happy
  3. Sad
  4. Angry
  5. Scared
  6. Bored
  7. Embarrassed

Toys and Games Charades Ideas

  1. Video Game System
  2. Swings
  3. Sliding Board
  4. Baby Doll
  5. Trucks and Cars
  6. Minecraft
  7. Sonic
  8. Mario
  9. Skateboard
  10. Legos

Cartoons and TV Shows Charades Ideas

  1. Sponge Bob Square Pants
  2. Paw Patrol
  3. Angry Birds
  4. Girl Meets World

There you have it, 101 good charades ideas for kids to act out. If you need some more fun activities, check out our summer activities for kids and our fun gym games for kids.

S creenwriters have a tendency of defining the three act structure by either vehemently opposing it or swearing by it. Some define it entirely differently than others. How is that possible? Well, let’s answer ‘what is the three act structure,’ learn its original intention, and see if we can find some middle ground between the many perspectives.

Defining the 3 Act Structure

What is the three act structure?

The true three act structure isn’t a formula, it keeps your beginning separate from your middle and your middle separate from your end.

Well, thanks to other screenwriters, that’s actually not it. For some reason, writers believe there is some kind of formula to the three act, but it’s really just a form of basic organization. It is not the same thing as story structure.

And this is where discrepancies emerge.

THREE ACT STRUCTURE DEFINITION

What is the three act structure?

The three act structure is a narrative model that divides stories into three parts — Act One, Act Two, and Act Three, or rather, a beginning, middle, and end. Screenwriter, Syd Field, made this ancient storytelling tool unique for screenwriters in 1978 with the publishing of his book, Screenplay. He labels these acts the Setup, Confrontation, and Resolution.

Some writers label these three acts the setup, build, and payoff. Both are correct. But the basic point of each of these acts is that they have their own set of guidelines to develop, build, and resolve a story.

On a basic level, Act One sets up the world, characters, the character’s goal, as well as the conflicts or obstacles that are preventing them from achieving their goal. Act Two raises the stakes for the character to achieve the goal, escalating the conflict. Act Three resolves the story with either an achievement of that goal or a failure.

This is not the same thing as story structure, it is an organizational tool to help build your story.

WHAT DOES A 3 ACT STORY STRUCTURE CONSIST OF?

  • Act 1 — Setup
  • Act 2 — Confrontation
  • Act 3 — Resolution

History of the 3 Act Structure

Brief history of the three act structure

Now that we’ve defined the three act structure in film, I want to rewind to the early days of storytelling. No, not Syd Field.

Aristotle’s Poetics is the first book any aspiring screenwriter should read. It’s the first playwriting manual on record.

But that’s not why you should read it.

Often considered as a theoretical text, his fancy phrased words do not veil the most critical insight that lays the foundation for all of storytelling. All stories (or using his language, tragedies and comedies) must have a beginning, middle, and an end. These represent the three acts in the three act structure.

This is important to note before we define what the three act structure is considered to be today. Some screenwriters get much more detailed with the requirements of what goes into each of these acts.

But the most important takeaway of the 3 act is understanding that one event must lead to another and then to another — this unifies actions and meaning and creates the semblance of a story.

A beginning, middle, and an end, isn’t a formula. It brings cohesion to otherwise random events. It’s what makes a story, a story.

Today, when writers discuss three act structure, this is the model they’re typically referring to:

How to act in a play

This is pretty standard. We’ll go over each act below, but this should be used as a guideline, not a rule book.

Act I: Setup

The setup involves introduction of the characters, their story world, and some kind of ‘’inciting incident,” typically a conflict that propels us into the second act. It’s usually the first 20-30 minutes of a film.

Act II: Confrontation or Build

The middle of your story should raise the stakes, you want the audience to keep watching. This is the main chunk of the story and often leads us to the worst possible thing that can happen to the character.

Act III: Resolution or Payoff

WHY SOME SCREENWRITERS DISAGREE

Making sense of the 3 act structure

So again, each act has their own set of guidelines that help develop, build, and resolve a story. How strict these guidelines are determines the level of resistance amongst screenwriters. And rightfully so.

Look at this other diagram floating around the internet, supposedly describing the same thing.

How to act in a play

This one looks a bit more involved, doesn’t it?

Do I really need two obstacles halfway through the second act? Will my story suffer with three or five, or one?

Of course not. You also can have as many of these “plot points” as you need to, to tell an effective, meaningful story.

One such structure that can help make sense of a traditional 3-act structure was developed by Blake Snyder and it’s called Save the Cat! Snyder’s Save the Cat! structure takes a traditional 3-act structure and breaks it up into 15 story beats.

Watch as we take this beat sheet and run Avengers: Infinity War through to see how they gave Thanos a complete protagonist character arc.

Infinity War Beat Sheet • Subscribe on YouTube

There is no predetermined formula for knowing exactly where and when these critical events should occur within each act.

Most of the time, big events like the inciting incident or resolution will obviously, and naturally, happen in their intended acts, but the specifics should come from the organic nature of your story, not a formulaic page count or act break.

Real story structure has less to do with where and when things happen and focuses more on why they happen. Our next post dives deeper into this idea. Dan Harmon’s story circle is up next, and that my aspiring screenwriting friends, will help you focus on what really matters.

Related Posts

UP NEXT

Dan Harmon’s Story Circle

Professional screenwriter and creator of shows like “Community” and “Rick and Morty,” Dan Harmon, gives his two cents on how to build a story from the ground up, instead of breaking down what already exists. It still follows a familiar structure but it’s another exciting way to approach breaking and developing story.

How to act in a playScripts for Plays for Senior Theater & Older Actors

One-act plays, short plays, and full-length plays for senior theatre, senior drama clubs, reader’s theater, senior citizens to perform.

Also, they can be performed for seniors and elderly audiences in retirement communities and senior living communities. The plays show senior characters, older people and mature adults as they live exciting and sometimes precarious lives.

These stage plays about aging have roles for mature, older actors from 40 + to 70 +. Plays written for older actors are often hard to find, These stage plays are ideal for presenting engaging theater for retirement communities, care home and nursing home residents.

Showing 1–16 of 22 results

How to act in a play

Off Our Rockers

  • 10 – 60 minutes
  • 1 – 9 M / 1 – 9 F/ Doubling Possible

Seniors, Variable Length, Collection, Colleges, Comedy, Flexible Casting, Small Cast

This collection of madcap 10-minute comedies appeals to everyone from teens to seniors. Casts include elves, grumpy homophobic neighbors, and a troupe of historical characters come to life.

How to act in a play

ABC’s of Memory

  • 10 – 60 minutes
  • 1 – 50 M or F

Auditions, Monologue, spoken word, Spoken Word Theatre, Variable Length, Reader’s Theater

Lianne’s ABCs of Memory touch on cultural milestones such as Elvis, Nancy Drew, Wonder Bread, 9-11, and Ty Cobb, as well as personal memories of family life. These poems both celebrate and mourn America’s past and present.

These are dramatic poems. Life happens. Events occur. Here is an elegy for our American Dream. As such. these poems are naturals for forensics, scene study, and spoken word events.