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If you are considering taking acting classes, there will no doubt be an exciting learning curve ahead of you. Actors need a spectrum of skills, such as the ability to express themselves clearly, to use their voice and body language well to communicate characters and emotions, and the ability to creatively respond to stories and those around them.

However, one fundamental skill that can be most daunting for new actors is the ability to memorise all their lines. It’s crucial to know each line to the point of instant recall no matter how much pressure you are under, otherwise the whole performance will start to come undone.

If you are worrying about remembering the next line all the way through the performance, then this will mean that you are less able to react to what is going on around you and your acting will be less convincing. Therefore, you need to know your lines inside out so you hardly need to think about what you are saying next.

This can seem to be an intimidating proposition. Fortunately, there are plenty of memorisation techniques you can use to help you learn lines effectively. Here are a few tips.

Read aloud

When you first get a script, find a quiet place where you will not be interrupted, and read it aloud rather than in your head. During your scenes, read your partner’s dialogue as well as your own to get used to the pace and rhythm of the words. Do not worry about making mistakes at first, just try to understand the motives behind the words.


For most people, repetition is the key to successful memorisation. Take on chunks of dialogue at a time rather than trying to memorise the whole lot in one attempt and repeat each section three or four times, or until you have committed it to memory. Many people find that reading at night just before they go to bed helps them to remember better the next day.

Use imagery

If you are struggling to remember certain key sections, try and link the words or phrases to images in your mind. Pick images that help to tell the story or otherwise convey the meaning of the words, so that they become linked in your brain. This will help you visualise the words rather than simply reach for the signifying language. 

Handwrite the words

Handwriting the words sharpens your memory  because the physical act of writing them down reinforces mental connections. You may need to repeat this process a few times.

Work with a partner

Working with someone to repeat your words back to you heightens your memory and also prepares for the transition from private to public performance. 


If you are interested in acting classes in Manchester, please get in touch with us today.

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