Monologue Master Class

Monologue Master Class




Janet Ulrich Brooks, Instructor


Luck of birth dropped Janet into a family that loved laughter and all things “art.” Family moves from Buffalo to Michigan to Missouri taught Janet that all things are temporary and inured her to the transient life of an actor.

An eclectic career ensued. As a seasonal entertainer in the Branson, MO area in the 70’s and 80’s Janet danced approximately 7000 Can-Cans, worked with some seriously funny folks, and learned stamina. Off-season, she worked in Kansas City doing dinner theatre, fringe theatre and a few commercials. These years also saw Janet through college in Missouri, and graduate school at Western Illinois University, earning an MFA in Acting in 1982.

Chicago became home in 1988. She toured nationally for about 5 years performing stories and poems written by children with Child’s Play Touring Theatre. Becoming a Director and Teaching Artist for Child’s Play took up the next 8 years. Then – a change. “Wow, I really miss acting.”

With years of comedy under her belt, Janet began doing Shaw, Chekhov, Shakespeare, Sam Shepard, Clifford Odets. She is a Company Member at TimeLine Theatre Company and has also worked with Steppenwolf, Writers’ Theatre, Strawdog, Pegasus Players, Shaw Chicago, Northlight, City-Lit and others. Stamina paid off in spades, having performed two one-woman plays; Lillian at TimeLine and Golda’s Balcony at Pegasus Players.

This business is home for Janet. She loves the work, plays well with others, and (being trained in the Midwest) has a solid work ethic – be on time, bring something to the table, and remain flexible. It’s amazing what you can learn from others.

Film credits include Divergent, One Small Hitch and Conviction.  TV Credits include NBC's Chicago Fire, STARZ's Boss and MTV's Underemployed.


Janet will discuss and teach the factors actors must consider when choosing effective monologues for specific types of auditions. Included and discussed are topics such as: What makes a good monologue for me? Is it important to consider age, type, gender, and ethnicity? What kinds of monologues should I have in my repertoire? And, tips on cutting and editing monologues.

Actors will learn to create staging for the entire monologue using specific directing techniques. Once the monologue is fully staged, the size can be reduced, when appropriate, to standing in place, sitting, or even in closeup while preserving the intensity and variety in the staging. Actors will apply script analysis and performance techniques to monologues in ways that allow them to act with truth, specificity, and connection “off of the wall”—with no partner. Demonstrating with participants, Janet will show how the acting techniques can work together with the staging to create strong auditions that are enjoyable for the actor to do, and for auditors to watch.


Participants do not need to prepare anything for this workshop.

Featured Participants must prepare/bring to the workshop:

  • Audition-Appropriate Outfit
  • 2 Contrasting Monologues



4:00 PM - 5:00 PM Introduction/Presentation/Q & A

5:00 PM - 7:00 PM Master Class with Featured Participants


Pre-Professional Theatre Intensive Home 

Professional Auditions 101 | Opera and Musical Theatre Crossover Master Class | Monologue Master Class

Dance Audition Workshop | Musical Theatre Audition Workshop | Shakespeare Workshop

Mock "Equity Principal Audition"