Building a Performing Resume

Lesson Objective:

Students will be able to construct an effective theatre resume by participating in creating a resume as a class and individually.


Materials Needed:

notecards, examples of good performing resumes. There need to be several examples (you can find them on the internet), and four of each (for four groups). One good example of a resume cut up into parts (like a puzzle)—there also need to be four of these.  Lesson 3.Resume Rubric


Hook: Distribute materials (1 minute)

Pass out note cards to each of the students.


Step 1: Scatergories Game (15 minutes)

Tell the students that they have exactly one minute to write down, on the notecard, as quickly as they can any and all facets that fall under “audition etiquette” or “what you need to be professional at an audition.” This is a game to see who can come up with the most original characteristics of a good auditioner. When the one minute is up, ask for a volunteer to read their list. Anyone else in the classroom who put down the characteristics said by the person reading should cross it off their list. If they have something that is said, they should yell out, “got it,” so the person reading can cross it off of their list. Keep having people read until there is a winner with items unsaid (or as time allows). As people bring up items in the game, have them explain what they mean and if there is a question justify why it is needed for professionalism in an audition setting. It may be helpful to write each of these characteristics on the board.


Step 2: Introduction to Resumes (5 minutes)

If the idea of having a resume was not brought up in the game, bring it up.
•What is a resume? What does it look like?
•Why is it necessary to have a performance resume at an audition?
•Why is it important to have a resume for any professional setting? (it is important as a means of contact, as a means for seeing one’s skills and experiences on paper, to help them remember who you are, etc)


Step 3: Characteristics of a Resume (10 minutes)

Ask the class to brainstorm what some parts of a good resume are. List them on the board. Once all of these are listed, ask the class which parts are imperative for a performing resume. Discussion of some points that were listed or stated on the board may be necessary. Points that must be included: name, contact information, organization, clarity, neatness, good spelling and grammar, theatrical experience, education, dates, venues, physical characteristics. Discuss why these items are needed on a resume (so that the auditioning can see what experience you have, can remember who you are, can contact you, etc.) Next discuss the importance of making your resume very organized and clear—easy to read.
•Why is it important to be this way? (If a resume is hard to read, no one wants to decipher through it while there are hundreds of others that are organized to consider; you want those auditioning you to see clearly your greatest accomplishments; you want them to contact you, so make it easy to do so; you want to be remembered, etc)


Step 4: Observing a Resume (10 minutes)

Next split the class into four groups. Give each group some example resumes (each group should have the same example resumes). Give each group a few minutes to come up with, as a group, two good things and two bad things that they see in the resumes. The groups must be prepared with justification for their choices—why is this bad or good? The groups will then share these choices with the class one at a time.


Step 5: Constructing a Resume (15 minutes)

Hand the cut up resume to each group. They must, as a group, solve the puzzle. Which part will they put where, and why? When they are done, hand them the original resume to compare to the one that they constructed.
•Did anyone arrange it exactly like the original?
•What did you have different? Why?
•What makes it clear?
•What would you change? Why?


Step 6: Review the Resume Rubric (5 minutes)

Hand out the resume rubric so that the students can see what they will be graded on. Go over the items in the “excellent” category to check for student understanding. If there is time, you can have the students start compiling a resume of their own. Students can outline their resume and create a template, and even create their resume by pencil. Their completed first draft resume will be due by the next class.


Step 7: Cutting Monologues (15 minutes)

After working on the compilation of resumes, bring the class together again. Explain that we will now have some time to work on our monologues and/or songs and work on cutting them down. Hand the monologues that they turned in back to them. Have them find a partner to work with. With their partner, they will read their monologues to each other, with a sense of the timing that they want to perform them in. The other person will time them to see if they are in the correct time. Go over the cuttings with each other, and help your partner find a good cutting. Keep cutting until you get it down to the right time frame. When the cutting is complete, use the time to start memorizing or deciding on another monologue. During that time, the teacher can answer any questions the students have about their monologue choice or how to find them or how to cut them, or about resume building.