Here is a new drama (or skit for all my readers in the USA) based on John 21:1-14
Two characters. They are called Andrew and Nathan. (Nathan is Nathaniel and while it doesn’t say Andrew was present a number of unamed disciples were fishing that night.) They are stood on the deck of a small fishing boat reflecting on the night’s fishing. Both talk in Northern accents with a “grumpy old man” manner.
Andrew: I reckon it’s your fault Nathan.
Nathan: Oh here we go Andrew. What are you blaming me for now?
Andrew: It’s your fault we caught no fish all night.
Nathan: Oh aye? How do you reckon on that?
Andrew: It’s your aftershave. The fish can smell you a mile off. You must stop going fishing after you’ve been clubbing.
Nathan: Oh right, blame me. More likely to be those two at the back of the boat – Zebedee’s boys. Whoever heard of fishermen called “Sons of Thunder”? – it’ll be all their racket that’s scared the fish.
Andrew: Still reckon it’s your fault. I’m from a family of fishermen like my brother Peter.
Nathan: What? Peter? When future Gospel writers come to write his life story, it’ll say “When Jesus came across Peter, he was mending his nets.” He spends more time sewing than fishing.
Andrew: Hey shut up. He’s listening. You know he’s not been the same since he…well….you know…let Jesus down. You know when he denied him three times. He blames himself for everything.
Nathan: Aye and a good night’s fishing was supposed to put that right. Not much chance of that. I’ve seen more fish in the Dead Sea during a drought on a hot Bank Holiday Monday.
Andrew: Hang on… there’s a nutter on the beach lighting a fire and waving at us. Better not be the People’s Front of Judea doing that Zealot thing again. Still haven’t had the last insurance claim settled….
Nathan: No…listen…John says it’s Jesus.
Andrew: Blimey again? He’s back again? He’s had more comebacks than Dr Who.
Nathan: Hang on… your brother Peter’s jumped in and is splashing through the water. No chance of catching any fish now. He’s being a real muppet.
Andrew: If that’s Jesus, why’s he shouting at us? What? Is he telling us how to fish? Does he know what we do? Does he know we do this for a living? He’s a carpenter from Nazareth. Since when did he go all Robson Green and give tips on extreme fishing?
Nathan: Shut up idiot. Now you’re scaring the fish – just do what he says. Put the net in on the other side.
Andrew: Oh right. Does he think the fish are just messing about? Playing hide and seek under the boat.
Nathan: Look…the nets…they’re full. There must be…153 fish in that net.
Andrew: What? 153 fish? How do you know?
Nathan: I just do. Google it later and see if I’m right. LOL.
Andrew: I have no idea what you just said. Well this net is heavy. All these fish. I’m going to put my back out.
Nathan: Do you ever stop moaning? Look! Jesus is cooking breakfast. He’s alive. He is risen. And he’s a man who cooks a mean breakfast. Now that truly is a miracle.
Andrew: No, I’ll tell you the real miracle. He’s talking to Peter and he’s smiling and nodding his head. Perhaps this is just what the doctor ordered.
This drama was written by Andy Redfern is copyright. However, you can use it freely for non-commercial purposes as long as you provide attribution and reference this site.
In my view nothing takes the dramatic out of a drama more than all the actors walking around with scripts in their hands. They don’t project their voices. They don’t make eye contact with each other or the audience. And they often still get lost when they try to look up and ad lib.
People will often site lack of time or “it’s only a small congregation” as reasons why they don’t learn lines. Well those may be good excuses but I reckon if it’s worth taking the time of people to watch it, it’s definitely worth taking the time to learn the lines. So how can we learn lines more quickly and more effectively?
- Get the script right – if you can’t read and deliver the lines comfortably then tweak the script so you can. If you feel the character wouldn’t say things quite that way, rewrite it so you are comfortable. Of course, you are only rewriting for delivery – make sure you don’t go changing the meaning!
- Record the script and listen to it – even if you have to do all the voices yourself most laptops, phones and MP3 players now have the ability to record and playback easily. Listen to it a few times perhaps while you’re doing something else like driving and you will soon be picking up many of the lines.
- Record the other speaking lines and then practise adding yours – I use an application called Evernote. It lets me record all the other lines as individual notes. I then play them back in order and give my lines when each note finishes. Great for practising when no one else can help out.
- Work with a friend – ask someone else to give all the other lines. Makes sure they encourage you to get the lines exactly right. If you end up getting a line wrong it can throw everyone else.
- Make time for rehearsals – there is no better way to polish your lines and your timing.
So next time go the extra mile – your audience or congregation will thank you!
Got any tips you’d like to share?