Long-term retention of a theatrical script by repertory actors: The role of context

Henk Schmidt, HPA Boshuizen, GJP van Breukelen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Four actors were requested to perform Sartre's No Exit after a retention interval of more than 5 months. Their recall of the play was studied either with the spatial and visual contextual cues normally available during a performance or without such cues. Total recall was still considerable, equalling 85%. The number of paraphrases of, and inferences on, the original text was however quite large (32%), suggesting that the actors had learned their lines according to their meaning rather than as a result of rote memorisation. The context manipulation showed that actors' recall is facilitated by the availability of spatial-visual information, but only to a limited extent. The relative importance of textual and contextual cues in the long-term retention of a play is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-28
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2002

Research programs



Dive into the research topics of 'Long-term retention of a theatrical script by repertory actors: The role of context'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this