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  • Writer's pictureLaurie Swigart


Contributed suggestions

Have any of these been pulled on you?

1. Hide the props (especially the important props).

2. Arrive to class/rehearsal late all the time.

3. Leave class/rehearsal early all the time.

4. When he/she tells you that your improv is over, keep going.

5. Deny the existence of Shakespeare.

6. Ask him/her to help you with your math homework when you are supposed to be rehearsing.

7. Every day wear a cape from the costume department and run around insisting that everyone calls you "master".

8. When your teacher tells you that your character is devastated because of the loss of their sister, the first thing out of your mouth on stage is "Ding Dong the witch is dead!"

9. Break the props.

10.Yell "line" even if you are not on stage.

11.Play with the stage lights.

12.While prompting, and a fellow classmate asks you for a line, ask them what page they are on.

13. Rearrange all of the books in your teacher's office to fit your personal favorites.

14. Everyday whine about your parts.

15. Forget your script.

16. Everyday ask: "Why didn't I get the lead in the school play?"

17. Take 20 minutes to set up a simple living room set.

18. Lock the keys to the prop box in the prop box.

19. Run around the drama room.

20. Hide in the sets when he/she is taking attendance.

21. Always talk.

22. Take the costumes, pretend that you are a helicopter and fling them over your head (don’t forget to make the helicopter sound too).

23. Set all of his/her stop-watches/alarms so that every five minutes a new one goes off.

24. Sing the song "this is the song that never ends" but change the words to "this is the play that never ends......"

25. Spend the class in his/her office looking at all of his/her confidential memos. When caught looking at those memos, defend yourself by telling him/her that it isn't your fault that they leave all of their important paper work out.

26. Play volleyball on stage when you are supposed to be rehearsing. No ball? Pick a prop, any prop!

27. Pretend that you are a telephone and make yourself ring. Remember, the louder the ring, the better.

28. Refuse to work with your partner because he/she drives you insane. So what if you did pick that person to work with you.....

29. Act like you are a five year old trapped inside a teenager's body.

30. Enter the class with only five minutes to go. When your teacher "reminds" you that you were supposed to perform today, tell her/him that you have a very busy life.

31. Sleep during class/rehearsal (hey, the couch is there for goodness sake. You were just testing the props).

32. Throw the props.

33. Write a script using your own real names for the characters and rehearse all week. Then decide that you want to change roles, but not the names of the characters. Do this without telling your teacher and perform your scene.

34. Perform a scene from Romeo and Juliet using a southern accent and giggle all the way through it.

35. Forget your lines in the middle of a scene, stop, look up and ask if you can start over.

36. Write a scene using the following dialogue: A: Don't sit there. B: Why not? A: Because. B: Because why? A: Don't sit there. B: Why? A: Just don't sit there. B: Why? A: Because. B: Just because? A: Don't sit there. B: Why? And continue. Remember it has to be a five minute scene.

37. Write all of your monologues about Hanson (or insert your own group) and talk about how much you "love" them.

38. Throw the costumes around the room.

39. When instructed to make the most elaborate set during a set design assignment, hand in a blank sheet.

40. Hand in a set design with one tiny dot in the middle of your stage. When asked what that dot is supposed to represent, tell your teacher to hold the paper right up to their face, squint and shake. Then inform your teacher that at this point they should be seeing the symbol for a


41. Eat the props (especially those good looking plastic grapes).

42. On the day of your performance test, run into the room screaming: "My eyes! My eyes! I hate chemistry class!"

43. Bring your own fan club and tell them to yell out "you're the best actor in the world" after you perform.

44. Opening night, after the hair stylist does your hair, say you don't think that it fits your character and take it out. Make her do it again and tell the teacher you're just REALLY

starting to get your character.

45. Tell the teacher after you get the lead that you have major stage fright and you do much better in character roles.

46. Miss rehearsal for a week. When asked why, say you were at home developing your character.....especially if you're an extra.

47. Perform "Take Me or Leave Me" from RENT at the family talent review.

48. Even after you've graduated from the drama class, go back every day. Go back often enough that when scene studies are assigned you get one, then stop going to class.

49. During an audition in which you have to improv, use the line: "Now get this, woman!" Then grab your head and run into the curtains screaming, "Oh no! Why did I say that again! Who in real life ever says that!"

50. On your last day of class tell your drama teacher that you left your copy of the handed out scripts at home -- all of them...from the entire year...actually from every year in the

program...actually six copies of each one.

51. Give the stage crew an escape line to listen for -- such as "oops," or singing "Paradise City" -- as soon as they hear this line they are to close the curtains and bring up the house


52. In scenes involving large crowds get the stage crew to dress up in extra costumes and join in on the fun.

53. Do anything with the rubber chicken from the props.

54. When told to practice your part with your partner play cards. When asked what you are doing, tell the teacher your character is a compulsive gambler.

55. When you're asked to make a quick entrance onto the stage for one line, make it the longest line ever and keep talking until class is over. Then complain that you don't like your

character and you want one with fewer lines.

56. Whenever your drama teacher asks if there are any important questions, ask (really loud) if you could go to the bathroom.

57. Always use, " My goldfish ate my script."

58. Hide as many scripts as you can find that people use before they start memorizing.

59. Sit in the front whenever someone is performing in class and just smile as much and as long as you can until the group cannot stand it anymore.

60. Get really carried away when you're putting the glow tape on the stage so that when the lights on-stage are down it's VERY noticeable to the audience.

61. Make a mess of the costume closet (so it looks like the room threw up). Inform your teacher that some hooligans messed it up and clean it to get BROWNIE points!

62. When asked "What is your character thinking?" look at your teacher with a look of confusion and say, "Character?"

63. When you only have a short line, stay in the seats to watch the scene. When it's your cue, run up and jump onto the stage.

64. Switch characters without telling anyone. See how long it takes them to notice. Then switch to another character.

65. Bring your script from the last show instead of the current one.

66. Speak all your lines to the back of the stage. When told to turn around, reply "But this side of the stage is so neglected!"

67. During dress rehearsal, wear your costume backwards.

68. Spontaneously chant "Uta Hagen! Uta Hagen!"

69. When you are supposed to have all your lines memorized for the new play/scene, come in and start saying lines from the previous play.

70. Constantly, without fail, call the main person by a previous character name, even in the middle of the play. Suppose you are doing "Our Town" and instead of calling the guy George, you call him Hamlet. Do this constantly.

71. Punctuate everything in your scripts with an exclamation mark!

72. When testing the red/white/blue strip lights, stand and start singing patriotic songs until strips are turned off.

73. Take a prop and sing to it like it is a baby.

74. Talk to yourself at rehearsals

75. Chew gum all of the time (yes, even on stage during rehearsal).

76. Every time your teacher tells you to do an improv, and get in groups, involve the whole class in a giant Jerry Springer clip. It must include ALL of the best stuff from the show, including several fights!

77. Constantly ask to use the phone.

78. Pretend to have laryngitis everyday, no matter what.

79. Feign surpass at the request to perform in Drama class ("But, I have stage fright!" will heighten the effect).

80. Get a case of the hard-core giggles during crucial scenes. If the director is not on the brink of tears, you have not gone far enough.

81. Talk backstage as much as possible, but disguise your voice so they do not know who to yell at.

82. Break character frequently.

83. Offer ridiculous advice to other actors during "notes".

84. The only good dressing room is a dirty dressing room.

85. When asked to do your own make-up, turn out looking like Marilyn Manson!

86. Ask everyday if you have to go to rehearsal (this works even better if you are only in the chorus).

87. In the middle of drama class, if a younger child walks past the door, fling yourself at the door screaming: "The little people, they've come for me! They're from outer space. PLEASE, PLEASE don't let them take me back there!"

88. Speak in Shakespearean English (with an accent, of course) at all times. Feel free to use actual lines from the Bard's plays.

89. Climb up to the catwalks and drop things onto the stage. Start with little things and then get bigger.

90. Say, "of course I'm building the set", while all you do all day is maneuver around the same flat. Pretend to hammer a bit and pull out a few nails, just for looks.

91. Bring food and drink to class. When you are asked to perform, bring them up with you. Whenever you hear your cue, be certain to have a full mouth.

92. Mouth other people's lines, while onstage.

93. Hang onto the curtain.

94. Steal other peoples lines when they don't make sense for your character.

95. Bring your pets to your teacher, claiming that they "demand a roll in the production."

96. Get the person in charge of the fly system to hook you up with a harness and fly you down in the middle of a scene.

97. Get the person in charge of the sound system to start playing disco music when you say, Hit it, Charles!" -

98. Scream all your lines.

99. Do not E-NUN-CIATE. "Wul, ah jez thot it'd beh guud ta git ot ah her, eh?"

100. Tell the costumers that you can "provide your own costume." Do I need to say more?

101. When your teacher tells you to come up with a monologue, find a scene for two people and do it with split personality syndrome. This works best with a love scene.

102. When asked what plays you want to do for spring, say the same play over and over again.

103. Transcribe your favorite T.V. show. Change the names of the characters and the title of the show slightly and poorly. Hand it in as your independent script.

104. When doing a performance, always forget the pants to your costume.

105. During a performance test recite lines from every play you can think of.

106. Memorize every line in the play except yours, then when you're rehearsing do your own little one-man show.

107. Change your blocking every time you do a scene and insist it was your teacher's idea.

108. When speaking your lines make obvious, unnecessary hand gestures. For example: whenever saying "I", point to the eye. -

109. When being a techie, sing backstage (in a loud voice) along with the actors. Remember, it's more fun if it isn't a musical.

110. Pronounce "drama" different than the normal way (pronounce it DRAM-A, which sounds like ham-uh - except dram) It's really catchy and you'll get people saying fast.

111. When in class, do the following: keep your back turned to the audience as much as possible, upstage yourself, break reality, look pre-occupied, etc.

112. "Dramatize" your teacher.

113. Stutter with your lines.

114. Walk on stage cross-eyed.

115. When rehearsing a love scene, always remember to "come on" to the wrong character. (This especially works if your character makes a pass at a character of the same sex.)

116. Rewrite the script right before the curtain and demand the entire cast memorize the new changes.

117. Find a piece of scenery like a screw or bolt. Name this "Lucky Screw" or whatever. Have the entire cast switch off holding "Lucky Screw".

118. Bring your costume every day to rehearsal until your drama teacher tells you repeatedly not to bring it. Then on the performance day forget your costume and say, "You told me I didn't need it."

119. Leave your body mike on when you leave the stage

120. When asked to do your favorite improv act like a piece of bacon sizzling on frying pan. Better yet - be a sprinkler with "water" and everything .

121. If you get the lead or any part in a Shakespearean play shower once a week and don't wear deodorant. Because after all that's what they did back then. One must get into character!

122. Lie on your back in the middle of the stage two minutes before curtains go up. When asked what you are doing, insist you're doing your "breathing exercises" (recall Viki from

Noises Off)

123. Skip rehearsal every day to go to sports practice, come in five minutes before rehearsal is over, and protest that you didn't know rehearsal was that day.

124. In the middle of a well known play, start ad libbing and go to the end of the scene.

125. If a prop falls off the stage, jump after it.

126. Get your hair cut or dye it during tech week.

127. Insist on a new costume during tech week.

128. Pretend to be drunk five minutes before the curtain on opening night.

129. On the night of a performance pretend to be violently ill until your entrance on stage.

130. Walk onstage backwards for all of your entrances.

131. If you're onstage and you get bored, start to hum your favorite song, rock back and forth and nod your head to your tune.

132. Pretend you can't remember the difference between upstage and downstage, and make this mistake frequently.

133. Stuff women's clothes with old rags (or use a mannequin) and put it in the bathroom of the guy's dressing room. They walk in and freak out- it NEVER fails!!!

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