We need one player on stage to act as a royal monarch. Other players line up to win favour with the monarch.
The player that is the monarch will seat themselves in character and receives her people one player at a time. Each player will approach the monarch with an offering. While this is most commonly a mime object there is no limit on what can be offered.
The monarch will accept the offering with al the grace and excitement that her character can muster. The subject becomes the monarch and the monarch moves to the end of the line.
The rotating monarch is a rare house rule that keeps things positive and having every player play every part of the exercise. It is more common to have the reject almost all offerings. Neither way is more correct. Since most houses use the fickly monarch the following paragraphs reflect this choice.
The player assigned to the role of monarch will create a character with movement, sound and want. The character need not be regal, or high status. However the character must remain consistent with each offering. The refusal of an offering must be based on her character’s want and must be dismissed with a reason. The leader may explore the monarch’s choices at anytime.
The subjects must have characters with move, sound and want. It may appear that the want can only be “to please the monarch” there is no limit to what a character’s want can be. The want informs the character. It is not an obsession or goal that must be reached. For example, the character clearly wants to please the monarch. However her want could be to have blonde hair, and she is pleasing the monarch to get into the salon sooner.
As with all characters the “want” is unspoken. If by chance one of the monarch’s subjects fulfills her want that player will become the monarch.
Every aspect of the character trinity: move, sound, want can be explored in monarch.
This exercise can focus on mime objects that are carried on stage and handed to the monarch. Focusing on the weight, size, texture, and emotional content of mime objects is another option of monarch. The leader should pay attention to the consistency of the object.
The environment can become cluttered with mime objects. There may be a bin for rejects or accepted gifts. The leader can use this as a teaching opportunity for working on awareness of the mime environment.
The narrative elements of STEPS are omnipresent. Monarch lends itself to focusing on advancing and expanding. Since the setting, ties and exploration are basically set the players can focus on making incremental offers that lead to accidental comedy. The leader should encourage offers that are based on what has gone before as opposed to offers that depart from the reality.
- All players make the same offer.
- Competitive – Monarch dismisses players from the exercise.
- Rotating Monarch – Each new player becomes the monarch
- Prime Minister – Each new player offers a bribe for appointment.
- Eternal Access – Each new player explains why they should get into their respective heaven.