Atmosphere and Mood



So I’ve taken a task from the The script lab and it is all about creating atmosphere and mood so this is my first attempt of doing so… please feel free to give me constructive feedback.

Thank you.

Objective: Set the mood through character action

Exercise: Write three short scenes (each 1/2 page). NO DIALOGUE. The same character walks alone through the same surroundings (interior or exterior) three different times. NO DIALOGUE. Use concise, creative description to alter the mood and atmosphere of each scene: The first time we get the feeling we’re in a horror film. The second time a romance. The third time a cheerful comedy.

Hints: Use night/day, lighting, props, sounds, wardrobe, and movement. Ask where the character is coming from/going, how the character moves, what is the next scene, what same elements can be used in each scene, but to different effect?



It is nightfall, a dusty road the stage is barely lit apart from a street lamp which is not working properly, it flickers on and off rapidly. DAVE appears from the darkness through what can only be described as a deep murkiness. DAVE is wearing an over sized oilskined jacket with the hood worn up, combat pants and army boots. As he comes closer to the audience it is very apparent that he is nervous and on edge about something as he is constantly looking around the ethos of space. DAVE moves carefully around the clutter on the road desperately trying to keep as quite as he can, but the mess becomes overwhelming to sneak around, Daniel knocks a pile that startles him, at the same time a blinding light deliberately shines on him, he tries to escape the beam but is transfixed on the source.


It is a beautiful summers day, on stage left there is a glorious french street lamp, through the middle of the stage is an exquisite pavement filled with different coloured bricks and on stage right is a table set out for two, a bottle of water with two glasses, a menu and vase with a splendid bouquet of flowers. In the distant is a faint sound of the sea, waves crashing, muffled sounds of children playing and the sound of seagulls squawking. DAVE enters the stage taking in the beauty of the scenery, he is filled with energy which is coupled with his radiant smile. DAVE is wearing a blue short sleeved shirt, a white singlet, blue spotted shorts, jandles, a sunhat and a pair of sunglasses. DAVE seems mischievous he spots the empty table and moves to it with determination, sitting at one of the seats with nervous excitement. DAVE picks up the menu and has a quick peek before placing it neatly back where he found it. He pours himself a water and looks around for a waiter, no one to serve him just yet DAVE pulls out his phone and proceeds to type a message, he looks at the menu to find the name of the cafe/restaurant he is sitting at, after completing his message he hits send confidently. DAVE sits in thought for a moment before reaching into his pocket and pulling out a ring box, he places the ring box onto the table carefully before opening it, DAVE delicately looks at the ring for a moment before his phone receives a text message, DAVE puts the ring back into the box abruptly and puts it away in his pocket. DAVE reads the messages and his face becomes more warm in expression.


It is evening, light shines onto an old lamppost with a sign on it that reads ‘Grand Opening of the Rainforest’ a professionally made sign with a giant arrow pointing towards the entrance of the new nightclub in town the ‘Rainforest’. Heavy bass and loud dance music is coming from the club but it is completely empty. DAVE appears from a door at the back of the club, there is a florescent light that reads ‘office’. He is wearing a pair of exercise shorts, T-shirt, novelty socks pulled all the way up and bright blue sneakers. He walks to the centre of the club holding a briefcase and a sign on a stick which he places along the bar next to him. He places the brief case on a table and opens it, the lid blocks the contents from the audience. DAVE proceeds to do some excessive stretching before pulling out a panda costume from the brief case. He takes a deep breath and puts the costume on, once in the costume he practices some dance moves then closes the brief case and throws it behind the bar in one swift move. DAVE grabs the sign that is leaning against the bar and drags it slowly outside towards the lamppost. DAVE takes one final deep breath before raising the sign, the sign has been hand written ‘NEW CLUB – IT’S GOING TO BE PANDAMONIUM’. A sense of embarrassment hits DAVE.


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