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Writing a Play Review Part 2

Learn more details of how you can write a good play review!

Writing a Play Review Part 2

Key Points to Consider

  1. Remember that some details, such as costumes, decorations or other visual effects, may seem inappropriate only at first glance. For instance, if you’re watching a modern interpretation of Shakespeare’s play, you will probably see avant-garde costumes instead of traditional ones. Don’t be too quick in judging them or saying that they spoil the play. Better see if this adaptation influences the play and its plot in any way. Be open-minded and unbiased.

  2. Take into account possible specifics of a theatrical play. First of all, remember that actors in a play can behave slightly differently than in a movie (for example, they may speak in mannered and histrionic voices). Even though such a behavior is different from that of the real life, don’t judge it. Better see whether it contributes to the play’s atmosphere and aims to emphasize something.

  3. It might be hard and distracting for you to take notes during the play. Therefore, better rely on your memory. To refresh it, you can go see the play once again or watch its recording. In case it’s the only time you can see it, focus on the most important aspects and avoid getting lost in smaller details.

  4. First write several drafts of your review and then proofread and edit your final draft at least twice.

Do and Don’t


  • Do learn as much as possible about the play, its cast, director and the theater where it is set. It will help you get prepared.

  • Do select a modern play if it’s your first review. They are usually easier to evaluate than classics.

  • Do have good expectations when you go to the play. If it matches them, you’ll be pleased; if it doesn’t, it’ll make your review sharper.

  • Do concentrate on the most important details first of all.


  • Don’t evaluate the play basing on your personal preferences. It’s bad to say that you “didn’t like the play because it’s a tragedy, while you like comedies.”

  • Don’t show disrespect in your review. Remember that setting a play takes a huge amount of work and effort, whether it is successful or not. So, be friendly while writing your critique.

  • Don’t write a review if you haven’t understood the play thoroughly. Sometimes you need to see it several times to grasp all the nuances and get the idea it aimed to convey.


Common Mistakes


  • Failing to gather relevant information before watching the play, thus not being prepared to evaluate it thoroughly and objectively.

  • Rushing to write a review immediately after watching the play without completely understanding its idea.

  • Taking into account only one or two features of the play and omitting all other details.

Now you have to be prepared to complete a play review successfully!