Actor – a person who portrays a character in a play

Climax – the point in a plot where the interest, tension, and excitement are highest

Conflict – the problem or struggle in a story

Dialogue – speech between characters in a play

Narrator – a person who tells a story; often spoken in the 3rd person, but may also be from the 1st  person point of view

Playwright – a person who writes the action, dialogue, and directions for movement in a play

Pantomime – the use of body movements and facial expressions to portray a character or situation

Plot – a sequence of events that forms a story or drama; problem and solution

Scenery – painted boards, screens, or three-dimensional units that form the background of a play and enclose the acting area

Script – a copy of a play that provides stage directions and dialogue

Set – the scenery, props, and furniture onstage; also a term for placing props and scenery

Stage directions – an instruction written as part of the script of a play, indicating stage actions, movements of performers, or production requirements

Stage left – The left side of the stage from the perspective of an actor facing the audience

Stage right – The right side of the stage from the perspective of an actor facing the audience

Theme – the message a play or drama communicates about its subject, such as “greed will lead to trouble”

Tone – the use of inflection to communicate feelings

Cite this article as: William Anderson (Schoolworkhelper Editorial Team), "Structural Elements of Drama," in SchoolWorkHelper, 2019,

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