Find Plays in the Library

Finding Plays & Monologues

Plays are included in the literature area of the collection and are organized by original language and publication date, so finding a play without the title or author can be tricky. All literature information begins with the call number P. The following methods can be used to quickly locate plays and monologues.

Most plays are shelved on the 4th Floor of the library with other literary works by country, culture or region and then by playwright. Here is a basic guide to what information you will find each subset of the literature section.

  • PA Greek. Roman. Latin.
  • PG Slavic. Baltic. Albanian.
  • PJ Oriental.
  • PK Indo-Iranian.
  • PL Eastern Asia. Africa. Oceania.
  • PN 1997 Screenplays.
  • PN 2080 Monologues.
  • PQ 1-3999 French.
  • PQ 4001-5999 Italian.
  • PQ 6001-8929 Spanish.
  • PR English. (Shakespeare = 2750-3112)
  • PS American.
  • PT 1-4897 German.
  • PT 5001-5980 Dutch.
  • PT 7601-9449 Danish. Norwegian. Swedish.
  • M 1500-1527.8 for Dramatic Music and Musical Theatre

Finding Monologues

Books of monologues typically include excerpts or short summaries of plays that can be used for auditions.

More monologues can be found using Quest by searching the keyword “monologues” and filtering to Held by library. Or you can browse the stacks directly. Most monologues have PN 2080 as their call number. All monologues can be found on the 4th floor. Here are a few monologues from the collection.

Play the Scene: the Ultimate Collection of Contemporary and Classic Scenes and Monologues / Michael Schulman & Eva Mekler PN2080 .P59 2004
The Ultimate Audition Book: 222 Monologues, 2 Minutes and Under / Jocelyn Beard PN2080 .U48 1997
Ultimate Scene and Monologue Book: An Actor’s Guide to Over 1,000 Monologues and Scenes from More than 300 Contemporary Plays / Ed Hooks PN2080 .U485 2007

Search Quest: the Library's Catalog

By Format

It is possible to search just the Library’s catalog for copies of plays we have in print. This method will find all plays, from Greek tragedies through contemporary theatre. Please note that there is no single play section; plays can be found throughout the literature section.

To search for plays in the Library’s catalog:

  1. Go to Quest.
  2. Click Advanced Search.
  3. Change the Search Profile to UE Libraries' Catalog
  4. Select Subject
  5. Type drama
  6. Select Books as the Material Type
  7. Search!
Catalog search of plays

By Publisher

  1. Go to Quest.
  2. Click Advanced Search.
  3. Change the Search Profile to UE Libraries' Catalog
  4. Select Publisher
  5. Type publisher name
  6. Select Books as the Material Type
  7. Search!
Catalog search by publisher

Theatre Databases

These databases are purchased by the library so students have access to great information. If you are off-campus, please log into Off-Campus Access and select the databases from that list.

  • Drama Online
    Drama Online offers expert guidance in the form of scholarly notes, annotated texts, critical analysis and contextual information making this an essential study tool. Critical interpretations, theatre history surveys and major reference works on authors, movements, practitioners, periods and genres are included alongside performance and practitioner texts, acting and backstage guides. Besides the core collection, UEL subscribes to these individual collections: Aurora Metro, Nick Hern Books, and Playwright Canada Press.
  • American Theatre Magazine
    Your inside look at what's happening in theatre across the US, around the world and the people who create it. The only national magazine that provides comprehensive coverage of the world of theatre both in the U.S. and abroad. Includes 5 complete playscripts each year, artists profiles, and much more. Two special issues published each year "Theatre Training" (January) and "Season Preview" (October).
More Theatre Databases

General Websites for Theatre

  • Database of Monologues and Scenes from Films
    Topics like accessible theatre, effects, fight direction, and rigging are covered by an overview of the craft, videos, books, suppliers and much more.
  • Internet Broadway Database
    IBDB provides a comprehensive database of shows produced on Broadway, including all "title page" information about each production. IBDB also offers historical information about theatres and various statistics and fun facts related to Broadway. Get a list of every production of Hamlet on Broadway or a list of your favorite actor's credits. Find out what played at a particular theatre or what shows opened in a specified Broadway season.
  • London Theatre
    This guide is the oldest and first website dedicated exclusively to London Theatre, including theatre listings, news and reviews.
  • Playbill
    Includes theatre news, listings of current performances both on and off Broadway, and feature articles.
  • Glossary of Technical Theatre Terms

Catalogs of Theatre Publications

These websites contain the entire publishers' catalogs. While UEL owns many of them (see section above on finding plays), we do not own them all nor are the plays available online.

  • Samuel French
    The site provides an online catalog of plays available for purchase, as well as a Theatre Resource Directory for stage equipment, costumes, lighting, and other items.
  • Dramatists Play Service, Inc.
    Formed in 1936 by a number of prominent playwrights and theatre agents, Dramatists Play Service, Inc. was created to foster national opportunities for playwrights by publishing affordable editions of their plays and handling the performance rights to these works.
  • Eldridge Plays and Musicals
    Eldridge Publishing, a leading play publisher since 1906, offers hundreds of full-length plays, one - acts, melodramas, holiday, religious plays, children's theatre plays and musicals of all kinds.
  • Playscripts, Inc.
    Playscripts, Inc. is an independent publisher of new plays and musicals that have a great diversity of voices, styles, and stories. They license amateur and professional productions, publish standard acting editions, binder books, collections, and eScripts. Visitors can search for plays that fit their specific needs and read script samples for free.
  • New Play Exchange
    The New Play Exchange is a script discovery and recommendation engine and the world’s largest digital library of scripts by living writers.


  • Helen Louise Allen Textile Collection
    This collection is one of largest university textile collections and includes 13,000 textiles and related objects spanning various places, techniques, and time periods.
  • La Couturiere Parisienne This site's name is taken from a 19th century bilingual fashion magazine. Originially dedicated to the fashion of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, it has since expanded to include early (and later) costumes/fashions. Lots of images, sewing patterns and
  • All Sewn Up: Millinery, Dressmaking, Clothing and Costume
    This digital collection includes millinery, dressmaking, clothing and costume books from the University of Wisconsin-Madison collections. These books from the first half of the 20th century (1907 – 1940's) include the history of clothing, styles of dress, fashion drawing, and design and construction of hats, clothing and costumes.
  • The Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
    The Costume Institute's collection of more than thirty-three thousand objects represents seven centuries of fashionable dress and accessories for men, women, and children, from the fifteenth century to the present
  • Milieux: The Costume Source
    Extensive list of sources related to costumes. Many books are in the public domain so their contents are readily accessible.
  • Smithsonian Collections Search Center
    This Gallery is a landing page for interested researchers to explore some of the many digitized collections held at the Smithsonian. You can explore by Arts & Design, History & Culture, or by individual Smithsonian repositories and museums.
  • History of Costumes
    The History of Costume (or Zur Geschichte der Kostüme) was printed from 1861 to 1880 in Munich by the publishing firm of Braun and Schneider. It was originally published as individual plates in a German magazine titled Münchener Bilderbogen. Later, these plates were collected and bound into book form. The total publication consisted of 125 pages, with four pictures per pages, for a total of 500 costume designs. These plates consisted of historical dress from antiquity to the end of the 19th century.
  • Fashion: Victoria & Albert Museum
    The collection is particularly strong from the 18th century onwards, containing mainly European fashion and accessories for men and women, together with important items of 19th century dress for the elite in India, China and Japan. The collection also includes a wide range of accessories from across the world, including footwear and hats.
  • Elizabethan Costuming Page
    This site that includes information, drawings, and photos about clothing for peasant, middle, and upper class men and women from the Tudor and Elizabethan periods (sixteenth century) in English history. In addition there are extensive period illustrations, patterns for making everything from shoes to hats, information on Elizabethan fabrics and colors, and some information on costume of the time outside of England.
  • Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Online Catalog
    The collections of the Prints & Photographs Division include photographs, fine and popular prints and drawings, posters, and architectural and engineering drawings. While international in scope, the collections are particularly rich in materials produced in, or documenting the history of, the United States and the lives, interests and achievements of the American people.

Associations and Organizations