Character Studies

Watch the Videos, “Interviews with the Actors Portraying Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler and Jamie Kincaid”

Lines of Dialogue

Playwrights write lines of dialogue for the actors to speak. These lines are the main way the audience receives information about the plot (story) and the characters. Learn more about the characters by reading each line of dialogue below for each character. Please read them separately as the three lines for each character come from different parts of the play and do not go together.

Try speaking each line aloud and with expression. Can you identify where in the play they were spoken?


“Claudia was organized - paying attention to every detail - almost as much as I do."

"You tell me all the details of your running away - everything – and I'll have my chauffeur drive you home in my Rolls Royce."

"Let's just say I needed the secret more than I needed the money."


“Jamie, we've got to stay inconspicuous."

"Tight wad. Maybe bringing you along was a mistake."

"You've just arrived at the most beautiful place in the whole world – filled with the masterpieces of Renoir and Monet - and all you can think about is food?"


“Stop correcting my grammar!”

“Hey! We could sleep in a sarcophagus tonight!"

"Twenty-seven dollars and eleven cents left. Did you know that food was going to be so expensive?”

Answer the Following Questions 

Short-Answer Questions

  1. How did Claudia and Jamie become closer as the show progressed?
  2. Do you think Claudia and Jamie were missing their parents while they were away from home? (Answer in the first-person, as if you are Claudia or Jamie telling us why or why not you are missing your parents or caregivers.)

Long-Answer Questions

  1. E.L. Konigsburg has clearly defined the personalities of the main characters in her story. What is so interesting is that each of these characters, Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, Claudia Kincaid, and Jamie Kincaid, experience changes in his or her outlook and emotions. Looking at each character individually, describe some of the changes you see in their thoughts and behaviors throughout the show.
  2. How do you think Mrs. Frankweiler felt when Claudia and Jamie talked about making her their honorary grandmother at the end of the show? Did you expect that response from her?