Matthew Boltz


A drama is a story enacted onstage for a live audience.

The word drama comes from the Greek verb dran, which means “to do.”

The earliest known plays . . .

were written around the fifth century B.C.

produced for festivals to honor Dionysus, the god of wine and fertility.

Like the plot of a story, the plot of a play involves characters who face a problem or conflict. Complications

tension builds characters and conflict are introduced.


point of highest tension;
action determines how the conflict will be resolved


conflict is resolved;

play ends

Conflict is a struggle or clash between opposing characters or forces. A conflict may develop . . .

between characters who want different things or the same thing

between a character and his or her circumstances

within a character who is torn by competing desires

The protagonist of most classical tragedies is a tragic hero. This hero

•is noble and in many ways admirable

•has a tragic flaw, a personal failing that leads to a tragic end


A comedy is a play that ends happily. The plot usually centers on a romantic conflict.

boy meets girl

boy loses girl

boy wins girl