I worked in period costume at historical sites playing a variety of roles. My job was to use first person (speaking as the character) and third person (speaking about the character) techniques to enrich the visitors’ experience of the site. The process is conversational, valuing what each visitor brings to the encounter. The preparation involves a great deal of research but live interpretation in action is not necessarily information heavy. It is better to trigger curiosity than to beat someone around the head with facts.
IMTAL (International Museum Theatre Alliance) Europe offer some useful definitions of the different types of live interpretation.
Past Pleasures’ Live Interpretation Overview is also useful.
I worked as a live interpreter for the National Trust at Bodiam Castle for over six years. I am now Visitor Experience Officer (Storytelling) at the Castle. I worked as William the Forester, Sir Edward Dallingridge and Benet the Baker amongst many others.
I have worked as a freelance Live Interpreter with Past Pleasures Ltd. Past Pleasures is the oldest and most experienced costumed live historical interpretation company in the UK. I have worked at Dover Castle (Ranulf de Glanvill, William de Hommet and Wulfheard the armourer) and the Banqueting House in Whitehall (as Inigo Jones) for them.
If you would like more information, please do get in touch.