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Monologues from a 2008 performance of The Laramie Project at Mary Institute and St. Louis Country Day School
Stephanie Beatriz:I am the kind of person that wants to get up in front of crowds of strangers and perform monologues. To each their own.

Monologues share much in common with several other literarydevices including soliloquies, apostrophes, and aside. There are, however, distinctions between each of these devices. In theatre, a monologue is presented by a single character, most often to express their mental thoughts aloud, though sometimes also to directly address another character or the audience.


  • Monologue, in literature and drama, is an extended speech by one person. The term has several closely related meanings. A dramatic monologue is any speech of some duration addressed by a character to a second person. A soliloquy is a type of monologue in which a character directly addresses an audience or speaks his thoughts aloud while alone or while the other actors keep silent. In fictional literature, an interior monologue is a type of monologue that exhibits the thoughts, feelings, and associations passing through a character’s mind.
  • A monologue can never be the whole story of a particular drama. It is always just one character's point of view at an isolated moment in the action...Perhaps the only and best bit of direction to leave you with when doing a monologue is to feel the need to speak, know what you are speaking about and to whom, and the words will connect with what you have to say.
  • Monologue and dialogue are two basic aspects of the semantic organization of an utterance and at the same time two mutually opposed forms of a linguistic structure in the functional sense; therefore, linguistics often speaks about monoligic and diologic speech.
  • The obvious mechanical convenience of monologues in general, quite apart from link Monologues, is their availability in filling time. On the whole the link monologue is less widely employed for this purpose than the entrance monologues.
  • Monologues, in which one person does all the talking, are longer speeches than participants have expressed so far. This does not mean that a monologue expresses only one point of view, its interest lies in the variety of perspectives that the speaker may present as part of the argument. Monologues are valuable components in the devising process and can serve as introduction, reflections and/or as links between scenes.
    • Monica Prendergast, Juliana Saxton, in "Applied Drama: A Facilitator's Handbook for Working in Community", p. 156
  • Although monologues are solo-voiced, in their theatrical representation there is a need for a more dialogical reality , with a real or imaginary “listener” to whom monologue is directed. In this kind of work, monologue is not the product of one person alone, but is processed and shaped within and by the group, which is a political act in itself.
    • Monica Prendergast, Juliana Saxton, in "Applied Drama: A Facilitator's Handbook for Working in Community", p. 156
  • A monologue is a speech made by a character to other characters, sometimes to a crowd. It is not a dialogue, where two or more people are in conversation with each other. Shakespeare’s plays are full of monologues. Among the most famous are Henry V’s ‘Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more’ speech, where the king is leading his troops into battle, and Marc Antony’s ‘Friends, Romans and countrymen, lend me your ears’ speech in Julius Caesar, where Antony is addressing the Roman crowd after the assassination of Caesar.
A scene from Romeo and Juliet
  • Mercutio.
    O, then I see Queen Mab hat been with you.
    She is the fairies’ midwife, and she comes
    In shape no bigger than an agate stone
    On the forefinger of an alderman.
    Drawn with a team of little atomies,
    Over men’s noses as they lie asleep:
    Her wagon spokes made of long spinners’ legs,
    The cover, of the wings of grasshoppers:
    Her traces, of the smallest spider web;
    Her collars, fo the moonshine’s wat’ry beam;
    Her whip, of cricket’s bone; the lash, of film;
    Her wagoner, a small gray-coated gnat.
    Not half so big as a round little worm
    Pricked from the lazy finger of a maid;
    Her chariot is an empty hazelnut…
A scene from Macbeth.
    Rebellious subject, enemies to peace,
    Profaners of this neighbor-stained steel—,
    Will they not hear? What, ho! You men, you beasts, ,
    That quench the fire of your pernicious rage,
    With purple fountains issuing from your veins! . . .
    • William Shakespeare, Monologue in Macbeth’s Monologue after he hears that Lady Mackbeth has killed herself, in “The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare Figurative Language Study Guide”

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