Dramatic conventions

A convention is a technique employed regularly in the drama so that the audience come to attach specific meaning to it. When a technique is used repeatedly in a drama the audience recognise its significance. They buy into it as an established way of telling the story.

There are a range of dramatic conventions that you can explore to make your drama interesting and engage the audience:

  • slow motion
  • soliloquy (a solo speech by an actor that gives an insight into what they are thinking)
  • adding narration
  • use of an ‘aside’ (when a character directly addresses the audience to comment within a scene)
  • breaking into song (as in Musical theatre)
  • using a chorus to comment upon the action
  • splitting the stage so that different spaces represent different locations
  • using placards (signs) to give additional information to the audience
  • split role or multi-role
  • using music to underscore the drama