Skip to main content
Skip table of contents

Rehearsals and scene plan

In preparation for the rehearsals, questions about the scenes should be worked out, scenarios and improvisations considered, the stage and audience space defined and the costumes and props prepared.

  1. First read the scene once or twice with distributed roles.

  2. Analyse the text (pause, intonation, ask and answer questions).

  3. Act out the scene once in the room (with textbook).

  4. Act out the scene in your own words.

  5. Act out the scene in pantomime.

  6. Try out possible scenarios, improvisations. (Important: design the stage so that the scenario can take place. Use props).

  7. Play the scene again in the room. In the process, you can already begin to set the scene. (Where is the actor coming from? Where is he going? Where is he sitting? Where is he lying? Where is he standing?)

Possible approaches to developing a play
This part deals with the development of a play and tries to show possibilities that serve to break down a character of a role. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to developing a play.

Scene resolution/rehearsal schedule

If you want to work on a play, there will always be empty times for individual actors during rehearsals. Very few actors are used in all scenes. Small roles sometimes have only a short scene appearance. The quality of a performance depends not least on whether it is possible to maintain the concentration of all actors - not only during the performance but also during rehearsals. Every role counts, no matter how small. Therefore, it is important to deal with the limited time in a sensible and planned way. This can be achieved by having those who are not rehearsing at the moment work on their lines, the set or the costumes. In any case, scheduling - who is in which scene and when which scenes are rehearsed - helps to reduce idle time.

The scene breakdown offers one possibility for an overview. The scene breakdown provides an overview of which character is in which scene. The scene resolution is thus a good orientation aid for the director, but also for the actor.

The scene resolution can be extended by various columns. The addition of a date column turns the scene breakdown into a rehearsal plan. It makes sense not to rehearse scenes according to the order of the play, but to arrange them so that individual storylines are worked on. For example, all the scenes in which Titus and Salome appear can be rehearsed one after the other. If the actors know which scenes will be rehearsed on which days, targeted preparation is easier.


Those who are on stage act for the audience. The audience needs time to understand what is being said to them. They can only understand if the structure of what is presented makes clear sense. The most important element of the structure is the pause. It can be long or short, as you like, but it must make sense. Pauses structure statements. (e.g. every capitalised word in a sentence indicates the end of a small unit of meaning). Pauses are punctuation-related. A simple exercise that quickly sharpens the sense of pauses is to discover the possibility of pauses using a text that has no punctuation at all. Where can I make pauses? How long can these pauses be? What happens if no pauses are made?

Scenarios and improvisations

Scenarios are a popular means in rehearsals to better understand scenes and thus be able to portray them credibly. Scenarios are small scenes that do not appear in the play but are addressed in rehearsal. They usually take place before a scene in the play and help the actors to put themselves into an action or a feeling. Scenarios are improvised, the text is secondary and should be found spontaneously in the scene. We also use costumes and props in scenarios.

Many improvisation exercises are suitable to be played several times with changing participants.

  • Play the scene in class. Let the students use their script. Ask questions: Who should play? Should the roles be distributed in advance?At the beginning it is not necessary to know who will play which role. You can do 1-2 hours of text work first so that the students know better which role suits them best.

  • Let the students act out the scene in their own words. Explain and give an example to your students: "Charming girl, give me your hand for life".... "Dear girl, marry me..." (give other examples)

  • Act out the scene as a pantomime. Here the children might be embarrassed, but show them how this could work.... (maybe a little film, as an example of impro).

  • Try out different scenarios and improvisations. Try to use props that you have in the class.

Examples of scenarios can be found with the respective scenes.

Entering and leaving the stage

Once the texts and dialogue have been understood, it is important to clarify from which point the actors will enter the stage and when and how they will leave the stage. These entrances and exits must be well rehearsed. In larger plays, ONLY these entrances and exits are rehearsed in some rehearsals.

Then play the scene again.

In the text, mark from where who comes in, where they go out, where who stands, lies, etc.

Don't forget: The final applause must also be rehearsed!


Scenes can also be performed purely in pantomime. The actors act out the scenes without words, only with their bodies, gestures and facial expressions. In preparation for this, the children can be asked to show their feelings in pantomime. Then, for example, only a very short dialogue is played wordlessly. The next time, they have to show these feelings with exaggerated facial expressions. The children will feel that this looks terribly exaggerated, but for the viewer it is often only then that it becomes apparent how the character being portrayed feels.

Scene plan

A scene plan in theatre rehearsals is an organisational tool used to coordinate and structure the different scenes and elements of a play. It is usually a detailed plan that includes the order of the scenes, the actors involved, the specific actions that take place in each scene, and sometimes aspects such as lighting, sound and set design.

Example - scene plan from Talisman (simplified)





Act 1, Scene 1

Act 1, Scene 2


Act 1, Scene 3


Act 1, Scene 4



Act 1, Scene 5


Act 1, Scene 6



Act 1, Scene 7


Act 1, Scene 8



Act 1, Scene 9


Act 1, Scene 10


Act 1, Scene 11


JavaScript errors detected

Please note, these errors can depend on your browser setup.

If this problem persists, please contact our support.