Updated: Apr 6
Here's a few helpful places I looked with success (and I had good results with college auditions) so I'm passing them along to you!
It's important to connect deeply with your college audition monologues, so when you're looking for great material I recommend the following 3 resources...
Libraries & Lists
They're all around you! School libraries; Public libraries; Bookstores are not exactly libraries but they're like libraries in that you have shelves of plays that you can flip through leisurely. Go with friends, pick out plays, and look for chunks of text.
If you live in Texas, you can go to Austin's Drama Loan Library, which has over 30,000 plays and collections. It's great! If you don't live in Texas, find out if your state has a similar resource like a Fine Arts Library or a college campus library that's open to the public.
Do not be afraid to take field trips just to search for monologues. It's fun and it's that important!
Speaking of "strong fit," here's how you can tell the difference between good and bad pieces for your college auditions.
I was in my high school drama department's library once, specifically looking for a comedic piece that I liked. I knew of great comedic authors like Neil Simon, Christopher Durang, Nicky Silver and others, so I started flipping through their plays.
Well, I saw a HUGE chunk of text in a Nicky Silver play called The Altruists. I totally enjoyed it! I thought it was hilarious, and I could totally see myself having fun telling that story. BOOM! I made a copy of the monologue, cut it to 1min45sec, and started working on it.
I prepared it for college auditions and had it as one of my backup pieces. I also performed it for the nationwide YoungArts Competition and received the Honorable Mention Award! Libraries are a great place to look!
Most likely, you have explored lots of characters & scenes in productions and class work over your training so far as an actor. Re-look at your past work for potentially great audition monologues.
When you draw from previous work, you immediately have a head start in your prep.
An audition piece that got me accepted into Juilliard was a monologue I had worked on in my sophomore year in high school. I LOVED IT! It was Italian American Reconciliation by John Patrick Shanley, and I totally picked it back up my senior year for college auditions.
I was already memorized. I understood the circumstances like the back of my hand. I had already made choices so I could get feedback from coaches right away. I had momentum with it because I had worked in-depth on the piece 2 years ago, and I was passionate about it.
Drawing from past work definitely served me well!
All of your people can help you cull from a variety of pieces they know of that can turn into your next college audition piece!
Me personally...I didn't get any of my college audition monologues from my people's suggestions, BUT I include it in this list without a doubt because many of my friends DID, and they got into great schools.
Do not overlook the people around you who have knowledge of plays. Ask them if they know any monologues that might be good for you to look at.
If you were trying out for a college sports team, wouldn't you ask your high school coach for tips?
Your network wants to help you. Allow them.
I hope that helps!
It's fun to choose those monologues you really resonate with.
Use these resources to guide you in the right direction, and always keep your eyes out.
Schools feel it when you love your pieces!
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