A character impersonation piece is often a performed act where an individual assumes the character of another individual in an effort to mimic voices, mannerisms and other character-related actions. In most cases, character impersonation pieces are for entertainment purposes.
Character impersonation can also refer to the embodiment of a character in a written work, generally called a script. This form of impersonation differs slightly from an individual impersonating a familiar individual such as a public figure, family member or friend. Impersonating a character from a script requires the ability to bring the character to life. The character in a script exists in script only and is dependent on the impersonator to impart specific attributes such as voice, mannerisms and style. This form of impersonation is an intricate part of theater.
A character impersonation piece that is specific to an existing individual is also an intricate part of theater, but it is not dependent on the impersonator to create certain character traits. This form of impersonation is limited to the imitation of preexistent traits. This style of impersonation is particularly important in biographical theater in which an individual is asked or expected to accurately portray an individual who many are familiar with.