Direction Review Criteria

Reviewers must give each criteria a score between 0-10.

Effective Storytelling
How effective was the direction in telling the overall story?

Was there a consistent vision that offered a clear and effective interpretation of the material? Was it successful in bringing out the play’s most essential ideas without excluding lesser yet important ones? Is the story told in a unified and absorbing manner? Or does the production fail to communicate key themes, or take full advantage of the dramatic or comic moments, or fail to fully engage you in the story?

Character Development
How well did the director deliver believable, engaging and empathetic characters?

Did the actors cast have the appropriate talent level, performance style, and physicality for their roles? Were the various elements of the production (set and dressing, costuming, props, etc.) coordinated in a way that supported character development? On the whole, did the performances convey the emotional depth and clarity required by the play? Were character motivations clear, believable and consistent? Or did the actors appear to be sleep walking through the story without dimensionalizing their characters?

How creative, interesting and original was the direction?

Was the approach to the material fresh and unique? Was the staging imaginative, lively, and interesting? Did it seem like an entirely new show while still remaining faithful to the material? Or did the production appear to be a very familiar by-the-numbers execution of the script?

Level of Difficulty
How difficult was the show to stage?

Is it a production requiring the coordination of unusual or complicated technical elements like projection systems, on stage rain storms, flying children, or other mechanical elements? Are there many fully-realized characters with complex motivations and relationships that need to be balanced? Or is this a simple show to stage, with simple themes and only a few simple characters?

Effective Blocking
How effective was the director’s blocking?

Were the actors’ movements and placements on stage highly effective in building dramatic or comic moments? Was blocking used to develop character, or define relationships between characters? Was the blocking clearly motivated, fluid, and appropriately balanced based on the objectives of each scene? Was the playing area used to its fullest advantage? Or did the blocking often look awkward and contrived?

Coordination of Technical and Musical Aspects
How well did the director coordinate the technical and/or musical aspects of the production?

Were scenery, lighting, costumes, properties and sound imaginatively and fully integrated for the best dramatic or comic effect? If it was a musical, were the songs, dancing and spoken scenes unified for the best possible impact? Or did the technical and/or musical elements fail to cohesively support the production in any meaningful way and clearly took a back seat to the acting?

How well did the director manage the pacing of the story?

Did the play move along smoothly, quickly and in a manner called for by the material? Was the show staged to minimize the number and length of blackouts? Did the actors pick up their cues in a timely manner? Or did the show seem to drag on interminably?