One on One

One on One

The Best Monologues for Mature Actors

edited by Stephen Fife


While contemporary culture may be fixated on youthful sex appeal, the most complex and interesting characters in dramatic literature have been, and continue to be, those over 40 years old. Characters such as Big Daddy in Tennessee Williams’s Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Halie in Sam Shepard’s Buried Child, or George and Martha in Edward Albee’s Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? have a texture and a gravitas that can’t be found in younger roles.

In One on One: The Best Monologues for Mature Actors (February 2015, Applause Books, $19.99), the latest entry in the Applause Acting Series, Stephen Fife has compiled great monologues from classic sources such as Euripides, Shakespeare, Moliere, and George Bernard Shaw, along with examples from classic American playwrights such as Tennessee Williams, Arthur Miller, Thornton Wilder, Eugene O’Neill, August Wilson, Maria Irene Fornes, Sam Shepard, Joyce Carol Oates, Christopher Durang, and David Mamet. Fife also includes work from younger playwrights like Sarah Ruhl, Lisa D’Amour, Samuel Hunter, and Matthew Lopez.

Fife has chosen the monologues in this collection with the auditioning actor in mind. As he explains in his introduction, “an audition is a one-to-three minute opportunity to impress a few strangers with how special you are … In order to do this, actors need a monologue with a strong action … to provide a way to showcase the distinctive expressivity each performer is capable of.”

With 81 examples drawn from the ancient Greeks to the 21st Century, One on One provides mature actors with a wealth of material to choose from.

February 17, 2015
Paperback Original
5.25″ x 7.75″
224 pages
Applause Theatre & Cinema Books, an imprint of Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group


Stephen Fife is the co-editor of One on One: Playing with a Purpose — Monologues for Kids 7-15, published by Applause Books. He was the first literary manager for Primary Stages, and he founded the Young Actors Workshop in Venice, Calif. His plays include Break of DayThis Is Not What I OrderedSavage WorldBlue KissSizzle Sizzle, and Scattered Blossoms. He has written arts features for The New York TimesNew RepublicVillage Voice, and American Theatre, as well as a memoir, Best Revenge: How the Theater Saved My Life and Has Been Killing Me Ever Since. He lives in Santa Monica, Calif.00122915



Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group, the trade book division of Hal Leonard Corporations, publishes books on the performing arts under the imprints Hal Leonard Books, Backbeat Books, Amadeus Press, and Applause Theatre and Cinema Books.

Posted on January 20, 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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