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(An excerpt from an English book's audio script) Situation: You and other students will meet a director of a play.

"We're going to meet a director. She'll describe the whole process of producing a play, including how she chose the actor."

Why is it that "chose" was selected as the grammatical verb here instead of "chooses" (present simple=fact), which I believe is the one that should be used instead.

  • Your "Let's say" suggests that this is a hypothetical, but "Why is ity that 'chose' was chosen" suggests that this is something which was actually said. Which is it? – Colin Fine Jun 16 '19 at 21:53
  • Thx for the correction, I thought this won't be spotted. I'm editing it now. – John Arvin Jun 16 '19 at 22:25
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Either is fine. It depends on the exact circumstances.

As your example is written, using "chose" (past tense), this is the implied sequence of events:

  1. You (the audience) are going to meet a director
  2. This director is going to describe how to produce a play, using, as a model, a play she already produced.
  3. As part of this description, the director will include how she chose the actor for this play.

Using "chooses" (present tense), the sequence is slightly different:

  1. You (the audience) are going to meet a director
  2. This director is going to describe how to produce a play, using, as a model, a hypothetical future production.
  3. As part of this description, the director will include how she chooses an actor for this play.

Admittedly, it's a bit tricky to spot the difference in nuance implied by the verb shift, but this is to be expected when learning a language at a more advanced level.

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We're going to meet a director. She'll describe the whole process of producing a play, including how she chose the actor.

I believe whoever wrote this either made a mistake or it could also mean that the director is going to talk about a specific play and how she chose the actor, assuming for this play the actor was already chosen in the past.

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