Play Critique Assignment Guidelines

Play Critique Assignment Guidelines

I. Introduction

A. Date/Title of the performance you attended

B. Identification of the play’s genre

1. Define the nature of the genre you choose

2. Describe how the play fits the genre

C. Statement regarding the playwright’s intent

1. What does the play teach the audience?

II. Body

A. Examples from the script which help to convey the playwright’s intent

1. Choose specific scenes that successfully demonstrate the

underlying theme or idea

2. Note specific examples from the dialogue that support the

playwright’s intent. Is there a particular character who

appears to be acting as the playwright’s mouthpiece?

3. Do not take the title of the work for granted–it may give you a

clue as to the intent of the playwright as well.

B. Examples from the production which support the playwright’s intent (the production elements)

1. Set

a. How does the set provide information about the play? Does its design support the themes inherent in the text?

b. Note how the set is used by the actors

c. How do scene changes work?

d. How does the set convey the overall mood of the piece

and is it consistent with the other design elements?

2. Costumes

a. Describe the characters

b. Evaluate how the costumes conveyed character

3. Lights

a. Evaluate the success or failure of the lighting in terms of

its basic functions: illumination, focus, and mood

4. Sound

a. Evaluate the success or failure of the sound/music in

conveying the mood of the play

5. Acting

a. Define the characters

b. Determine the success or failure of each actor by

evaluating their success or failure in conveying the character physically, vocally and psychologically

6. Directing

a. Consider how the actors move on stage and comment on

the effectiveness (or lack thereof) of those


b. How do all of the elements listed above work as a

whole? Are there inconsistencies that detract from

the overall impact of the play? Be specific.

III. Conclusion

A. Re-state the thought of the play (playwright’s intent)

B. Make a general summation analyzing the results of your evaluation

1. If the play succeeded in conveying the playwright’s intent through the script and the production elements, your response to the question, “Was it worth doing?” should be affirmative

2. If the play overwhelmingly failed to convey the playwright’s intent, it was not worth doing

Your work should be carefully thought out and well-structured. I will grade you based on the quality of your evaluation AND the scholarly quality of your writing. Beware grammar and spelling errors–with today’s technology there are no excuses for misspelled words. Always proofread your work and please do not attempt to fool me with large margins and obvious blank space–I was born at night, but it wasn’t last night!!

Recommended Pages: 4 full pages (works cited page does not count as a page)

Style: MLA

Citations: Have a works cited page at the end of your essay and at least three citations.

Thesis: For this essay the general statement and the specificity will be chosen for you, but you will

need to find the depth on your own.

Layout of the essay :

Intro Paragraph – best place for ethical arguement
Purpose paragraph – define the intent of the shelter (i.e. – repopulate. preserve. teach. clean up after bomb)
Person 1 paragraph Pros
Person 1 paragraph cons
person 2 paragraph pros
person 2 paragaph cons
person 3 paragraph pros
person 3 paragraph com
paragraph for why you did not choose someone on the list
conclusion paragraph


You are the foreman of a large nuclear bomb shelter that can sustain 100 people for 100 years. A

nuclear war has begun and 97 of the people who were supposed to come to this bomb shelter have

come, but three slots remain open. There are a number of people on the waiting list to be allowed

admittance into the bomb shelter. You will be given which three to save and you must write an essay

explaining why these three people were allowed into the shelter. You will research every factor of your

people including their jobs, diseases, social circumstances, and anything else that will add weight to

your argument. You will also spend some time explaining why you did not choose other more obvious

choices. You may assume your shelter has 10 million dollars in resources.



Bradley Stevens

Age: 36

Sex: M

Occupation: AC repairman

Family: Henry Stevens (son), Emily Stevens (Ex-wife)

In addition to his air conditioning mechanics, Bradley also has basic carpentry skills and has a

beginner’s pilot license. He completed an associate’s degree in Air conditioning repair at Denver

community college. He no longer lives with his son but is willing to raise him if the two are

admitted into the shelter. Bradley has one domestic battery conviction and served six months in

prison and two years of probation. He is mildly overweight, wears corrective lenses, but is in

good health.


Emily Stevens

Age: 32

Sex: F

Occupation: None

Family: Henry Stevens (son), Bradley Stevens (Ex-husband)

Emily has some amateur gardening skills. She dropped out of college after two years. She has

five years of experience as an administrator’s assistant but has not worked for three years. Emily

lives with her son, Henry, and would prefer to live with him. Emily has no criminal record. She is

in good physical shape, and in good health. She has been diagnosed with severe depression

three years ago and takes anti-depressant medication.


Henry Stevens

Age: 12

Sex: M

Occupation: None

Family: Bradley Stevens (Father), Emily Stevens (mother)

Henry is a grade school student. His aptitude tests are average and his grades are usually below average. He has two years of experience as a cub scout and has learned several camping and survival tactics. Henry will have to live with a guardian and prefers his mother, but will not require as many meals as a full grown adult. Henry has been diagnosed with ADD and has had

difficulty with his schoolwork. He has no other illnesses or diseases.


Geoffrey Augustus

Age: 34

Sex: M

Occupation: Physics Instructor

Family: None

Geoffrey has advanced knowledge of physics and has a five year background as an engineer. He has a Masters in Science for engineering and a Bachelor’s degree in physics. He has spent the last three years teaching at a local university. Geoffrey has one conviction of driving under the influence five years ago. He spent seven days in jail and served six months of probation. Although he does not show any symptoms he is a viral carrier of the Hepatitis B virus. He is, otherwise, in good health.


Christine Flores

Age: 22

Sex: F

Occupation: Veterinary Assistant

Family: Jessica Hopeman (wife)

Christine knows basic suturing, knows how to serve as a surgical assistant, and is trained to administer complex medication. She has a Bachelor’s in Animal Biology and has been a veterinary assistant for one year. Christine has a juvenile criminal record, but has not had any charges recently. Christine is slightly overweight and has type 2 diabetes. She has some insulin but will eventually require medicine from the shelter’s stores.


Jessica Hopeman

Age: 25

Sex: F

Occupation: Librarian

Family: Christine Flores (wife)

Jessica’s skills include research methods, and speed reading. She is incredibly well-read and has basic knowledge of multiple subjects. She has a Master’s degree in library Science, and a Bachelor’s in English. Jessica has no criminal record. She is paralyzed from the waist down after an at-fault car accident. Jessica needs a wheelchair to get around and she is infertile. She is overweight, needs corrective lenses, and suffers from high cholesterol.


Dillon Wu


Sex: M

Occupation: Contractor

Family: None

Dillon has taken over his adoptive father’s business as a contractor. He has 20 years of knowledge in construction, basic structural engineering, and blueprint design. He also has plumbing, electrical, and insulation training. He is a high school graduate. He’s run several marathons as a hobby. Dillon has a marijuana habit and has been convicted once for possession. His medical records show that he is HIV positive, but responds well to the HIV cocktail. He has enough cocktail for a month and from then on will have to use medicine from the shelter’s stores. He is otherwise in good physical shape.


Hunter Thompson

Age: 76

Sex: M

Occupation: Writer

Family: None

Hunter is a noted cultural icon and has published several books and articles that helped to define the 60’s counterculture movement, and the American elections of the 70’s. He has several years of gun training and knows how to shoot, and maintain firearms of every variety. He also has some experience with amateur explosives. Hunter has a Doctorate and Master’s in Journalism and a Bachelor’s in English. He has a 60year smoking habit and has used illegal drugs of all types in his lifetime. Hunter is healthy for his age, but his mobility is impaired by arthritis. He has recently exhibited suicidal tendencies.


Jessica Stills

Age: 40

Sex: F

Occupation: Cattle Rancher

Family: None

Jessica runs a ranch with over 500 head of cattle. She knows everything there is to maintaining and breeding large animals. She earned a Bachelor’s in Animal husbandry and has over twenty years of experience in ranching. She knows basic medicine and is skilled at horseback riding. Jessica has no criminal record. She is in excellent physical condition, but she does suffer from bipolar disorder.


Tyreese Evans


Sex: M

Occupation: Survival Expert

Family: None

Tyreese is an ex-Green Berret that now teaches wilderness survival classes over the weekend.

He is a skilled soldier and is an expert at wilderness survival. Tyreese knows several martial arts, is an expert at firearms, and knows guerrilla warfare tactics. He has a Bachelor’s in Philosophy. Tyreese has several juvenile crime convictions and one public intoxication violation in his early twenties. He has earned several medals in the field serving the country, and he was honorably discharged five years ago. Tyreese is in excellent physical condition and has no psychological disorders

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Play Critique Assignment Guidelines Play Critique Assignment Guidelines Play Critique Assignment Guidelines Play Critique Assignment Guidelines

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