Theatre: Auditioning/Monologues

A Research Guide for Theatre from West Chester University Libraries


The library has many sources of audition material. Besides the full text of individual plays (see the Finding plays tab), audition material can also be found through the library catalog using the subject headings Monologues, Scenes (Dialogues), or Acting--Auditions.

Many contemporary monologues and scenes found through the above searches have been published in the following annuals. The call number for each includes the year the plays were produced. Beginning in 2009, the three volumes below have become two volumes, as indicated below.

  • The best men’s stage monologues of ... 808.82 B561c (beginning in 2009, The best men's stage monologues and scenes)
  • The best women’s stage monologues of ... 808.82 B561d (beginning in 2009, The best women's stage monologues and scenes)
  • The best stage scenes of ... 808.82 B561e (to 2008)

For classic monologues and scenes, try Classical Monologues from Aeschylus to Bernard Shaw (4 volumes) 808.82 C614c

For monologues from Shakespeare, try Speak the Speech! Shakespeare's Monologues Illuminated, by Silverbush and Plotkin (822.33 XS587gs). The index divides the monologues by gender and by type (dramatic or comedic). An approximate delivery time is given with each monologue.

The Ultimate Scene & Monologue Sourcebook: An Actor’s Guide to over 1,000 Monologues and Scenes from more than 300 Contemporary Plays by Ed Hooks. 808.8245 H784 2007 (in print and online)--a great source for deciding on monologues or scenes you might want to perform:
o The first section provides
   Synopsis of each play
   Analysis covering gender and number of actors, number of monologues/scenes included, acting level
o The second (male monologues) and third (female monologues) sections provide
   Specifics about the selected monologues (e.g., act, page numbers (based on specific edition), speaker, speaker’s age, type of play)
   Context for the monologue, starting and ending lines
o The fourth (male/male scenes), fifth (female/female scenes), sixth (male/female scenes), and seventh (three-person scenes) sections provide
   Specifics about the selected scenes (e.g., act, page numbers (based on specific edition), speakers, speakers’ ages, type of play)
   Context for the scene, starting and ending lines
o Also included are
   An appendix listing the plays covered
   An appendix listing book vendors specializing in plays
   An index by playwright and comedy/comedy-drama/drama breakdowns under each category of sections 2 through 7.
o The library owns every play covered.

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