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How to create a one-person show

You might have found yourself wondering: "Can I create a show?"

The real question is - Do you want to create a show?

I mean, no one will give you a licence to perform (not even professional training will give you that) and there is no official permission you need to wait for. The fact that you’ve never done it before is a great excuse why you shouldn't try, but when you take a min to think about it, you know it doesn’t make sense. (People who perform all the time have all started somewhere, right?)

It's true, you haven’t been invited to perform at the National Theatre but you can create your own opportunities to perform your work even if it’s a bunch of friends in your living room or a small theatre you hired for the night.

Right? Right!

Oh, there’s another small issue, isn’t there?

You don’t have a show!

I mean, you would have stepped out of your comfort zone and put your work out there somehow if only you had some work to perform. Right?

So... How do you create a show?

First, please understand that it is up to you. No one will stop you from doing this and no one will do it for you. You’re an adult and you call the shots!

When you‘ve made a decision, you can take someone to help you on this journey (Me? Check the bottom of the post for details) or you can also give it a go on your own.

In this post, I have made a list of the different elements you will need to go through when creating your work. I’ve put them in an order that makes sense when you read it but this doesn’t have to be the order in which you approach the work. You might start at 5 and jump to 3 then do 1&2 together and go to 3 again. A creative process is a mess in which you constantly ask: “What do I need to do now?” and the answer will need to come from you.

I wrote this list as if you are doing this on your own but if you decide you want to have a go and hire me to help you on this process you can find a link at the end to read a bit more and get in touch.

And now, to work:​

1. Find what you want to say

The fact that you want to be on stage/ film doesn’t mean that you know what you want to say. If you do - great! Carry on reading. If you don’t - think about what makes you tick. Create many short pieces (take 10-15min to create each of them). After a while you might notice a common theme or you’d love one more than the others and decide to focus on that one. It’s a journey of exploration with you observing and creating for a while. Enjoy it :)

2. Shape into .. what?

Now that you know what you want to say. How will you do it? Will it be on stage? Screen? Recorded or live? Will you use storytelling? Shadow puppetry? Movement? Only speech? No speech? Music? Clowning? Traditional play script? There are so many different options (this is just a small selection). Pick one or more forms that you love and that fit the piece.

3. Create

Fun and tedious at the same time: Write, re-write, plan, try, scrap… You might want someone to help you along the way with decision-making, feedback, and suggestions. Make sure that this person makes you feel good about this. If they don’t - find someone else (or they’ll kill your work before it’s created)

4. Rehearse

Time to repeat what you’ve created. Don’t feel like your show needs to be perfect before you start rehearsals. In fact, it is very likely that your creation time and rehearsal time will happen together - you create something and while rehearsing it, you decide to change parts or even the entire thing. You might even need to change the form you picked two paragraphs ago. This isn’t only normal but a very healthy creative process. You will need a supportive outside eye here, especially if it’s your first time creating something like this. And you might even need to learn some new skills - enjoy your school time :)

5. Production

Every show needs a bit (or a lot) of producing.

This can be editing music or video (or both), creating costumes or props, finding a space to perform, getting an audience and more… If you have friends that can do some of it - feel free to ask for help but also take responsibility for the final product. It’s not nice to work so hard on a show and then have music you don’t like in it. Give yourself time for this stage and ideally, start what you can while still rehearsing (you might need some of it for the rehearsal period).

This stage can seem tedious but when it’s done you’re gonna feel so proud!

6. Mindset (should have been at the top of this list)

This journey isn’t just about creativity, talent or hard work. It is also an emotional rollercoaster as well as a powerful tool for self-development when done with the right support. Make sure you have that support around you. It could be a supportive friend or a professional helping you.

I can help you.

I have created pieces for myself and for others and I have worked with many adults through their time of self-development through acting and performance. I can be your mentor for this time of your life. From finding what you want to say, through decision-making and developing your acting skills to making sure you can show your work. I will also be with you when you feel overwhelmed or stuck and give you the tools to take get yourself going again until you have something you are proud of.

Whether you want to hire me to work with you or you just have a question - click here to read more and get in touch.

Now go and create something beautiful ❤️

Creatively yours,


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