As Shakespeare once said, "All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players." For student actors, this statement couldn't be more true. Participating in a play is not just about memorizing lines or hitting your marks; it's an opportunity to step into someone else's shoes and bring their story to life. However, without proper character development, even the most talented actor can fall flat on stage. In this blog post, we'll explore why character development is essential for student actors and share tips on how they can bring their roles to life with authenticity and depth. So grab your script and let's dive in!

It is essential for student actors to develop their characters in order to create a believable and compelling performance. In order to do this, they must first understand the basics of character development: who their character is, what their goals are, and how they relate to other characters in the play.

Once they have a firm grasp on these basics, they can begin to flesh out their character's personality, quirks, and back-story. The more detail they can add, the more three-dimensional and real their character will become. This process takes time and effort, but it is essential if student actors want to give a successful performance.

The Benefits of Character Development

One of the benefits of character development is that it allows student actors to understand their characters' motivations and objectives. It also helps them to connect with their characters emotionally and create a believable performance. Furthermore, character development can help student actors to find ways to identify with their characters and make the characters their own. Finally, developing a character can help student actors to better understand the play as a whole and how their character fits into the story.

Tips for Character Development

Assuming you want tips for developing a character for a play: 

1. Do your research 

It is important that you know everything you can about your character before beginning the process of developing them. This means reading the script thoroughly and taking note of every little detail about your character. If you have any questions, be sure to ask the director or another cast member. The more information you have, the easier it will be to develop a well-rounded character.

2. Create a backstory 

After you have gathered all of the information about your character, it is time to start fleshing them out. One way to do this is by creating a detailed backstory for your character. What are their hopes and fears? What are their motivations? What has led them to the point they are at in the play? Answering these questions will help you understand your character on a deeper level and make their actions more believable on stage.

3. Get into character 

Once you have developed a strong understanding of who your character is, it is time to start bringing them to life. Start by thinking about how they would carry themselves and speak. Would they be confident or shy? Would they use big words or small words? How would they dress and style their hair? It is important to remember that your goal is not to imitate someone else but to create a unique portrayal of the character that is true to who they are.

Different Methods for Character Development

There are many different methods for character development for student actors in a play. Some common methods include:

1. Take Time to Get to Know Your Character: One of the most important things you can do as an actor is to take the time to get to know your character inside and out. What are their likes and dislikes? What motivates them? What are their fears and vulnerabilities? The more you know about your character, the easier it will be to bring them to life on stage.

2. Create a Backstory: A great way to get to know your character is to create a backstory for them. What were they like growing up? What kind of experiences have they had that have shaped who they are today? This will give you a better understanding of why your character behaves the way they do and can help you make more believable choices on stage.

3. Explore Different Sides of Your Character: It’s important to remember that no one is completely good or bad – we all have different sides to us. So, when developing your character, make sure to explore both the positive and negative aspects of their personality. This will help create a more well-rounded and three-dimensional character that audiences can relate to.

4. Practice in Front of a Mirror: Once you have a good understanding of your character, it’s time to start putting your work into practice! 

How to Connect with Your Character

When it comes to acting, one of the most important aspects is creating a believable character. This can be difficult for some student actors, as they often have trouble connecting with their character on a personal level. Here are some tips on how to connect with your character:

1. First and foremost, you need to understand your character's backstory. What motivates them? Why do they act the way they do? The more you know about your character's past, the easier it will be to understand their actions and motivations in the present.

2. It can also be helpful to think about your own life experiences and how they might relate to your character's situation. What would you do if you were in their shoes? This can help you empathize with your character and understand their choices.

3. Another useful tip is to create a "character journal." Write down everything you know about your character, including their backstory, personality traits, likes/dislikes, etc. This will help you keep track of all the information you've learned and make it easier to reference when needed.

4. Finally, don't be afraid to experiment with different ways of playing your character. Try out different voices or mannerisms until you find something that feels natural and comfortable for both you and your character.

The Importance of Believing in Your Character

It is essential for student actors to believe in their characters in order to convincingly portray them on stage. If an actor does not believe in their character, the audience will be able to tell and the performance will suffer as a result.

When developing a character, it is important for student actors to think about who their character is and what motivates them. What are their goals and how do they go about achieving them? What obstacles do they face and how do they overcome them? Once student actors have a clear understanding of their characters, they can begin to infuse them with life and make them believable on stage.

Believing in your character also means being willing to take risks. Student actors need to be brave and step outside of their comfort zones in order to truly bring their characters to life. They should be willing to experiment with different choices and explore all the possibilities open to them. Only by taking risks will student actors be able to find the truth of their characters and deliver truly compelling performances.


Character development is an essential part of any student actor’s journey in theatre. Developing a character and inhabiting their world helps students to understand the dramatic potential of performance while honing their craft. By learning how to analyze a play, create objectives and make believable choices, they can grow as performers and build on the skills needed for success in all aspects of theatre. When done right, character development encourages creativity and gives students the confidence to truly shine onstage.