Minor Characters


  1. When writing for the theatre, a playwright has to think about the practical implications of staging their play. Putting on a show is an expensive business, so designers, writers, directors and actors all have to make the best use of resources and make clever, creative decisions, which keep costs down while entertaining the audience.
  2. When working on a play, professional actors, have to stay in the theatre for the whole show, no matter how small their part might be. It is their job, so they need to be paid.
  3. Many plays allow for actors playing small parts to ‘double-up’, playing two or more roles.
  4. The group of actors who play all the minor roles between them are known as the _Chorus. _
  5. This is a very old technique, used by Shakespeare and the Ancient Greeks. Usually, they do so without it being mentioned, but in Blood Brothers, Russell draws attention to it for comic effect.

Milkman and Gynecologist

  1. The milkman is a small part, so the actor playing him is also the gynaecologist.
  2. Mrs Johnstone recognises him as the milkman. In a much more middle-class voice, he replies, ‘I’ve given up the milk-round and gone into medicine. I’m your gynaecologist.’