Memorization Tips

These are just a few methods to use if you’re new to theatre or are having trouble memorizing, whether it’s for an audition or lines in a show.

  1. Write down each of your lines five times on paper. It sounds like a detention exercise, but it really helps put the specific order of the words into your brain. This is probably the quickest way to memorize lines out of all of them. For a monologue, break up the sentences into smaller chunks and memorize them by writing them chunk by chunk.
  2. Make a quizlet. Put the line cue (the line right before your line) as the term and put the line as the definition, so you have to recall your line by figuring out what it comes after. It really helps with associating cue lines with your own lines.
  3. Say your lines out loud seven times. It’s said that the human brain can remember things pretty well after you’ve said it that many times. It also helps with deciding on how you want to say your lines.
  4. Think through your lines before you go to sleep after you’ve memorized them. This helps check if you really have them down because it’s nothing but you and your brain, there’s no script to look at when your eyes are closed.
  5. Go backwards! Most people memorize beginning to end and end up having trouble remembering what’s at the end of their text. Start at the end of the text you’re trying to memorize and speak the last line aloud as many times as it takes for you to memorize it. Go another line back and do the same thing. Repeat until you have the whole thing down!