You’ll need a chair for everyone plus one extra.
Explain that when you sit in the hot seat, you are no longer ‘you’ but a different character. Once in the hot seat, the rest of the group can ask you any questions they like, which you answer in character. Of course, your character might choose not to answer some of the questions posed…
Before you sit in the hot seat, discuss what questions the group might like to ask the character. Build up the tension: ‘You’re about to meet…’
You could include an item of clothing for the hot seated person to wear – a hat, gloves or similar.
Focus the questions by asking for a ‘who’ question, a ‘why’ question, a ‘what’ question, a ‘when’ question, a ‘how’ question and so on.
Explore the same character using several different hot seaters. Try to make sure they are all believable from the evidence in the story you’re exploring, but they might be very different (is Zacchaeus a sneering, cackling villain or a shy, lonely little man?)
Let members of the group take it in turn to be in the hot seat.
Keep to a time limit.
Have a puppet in the hot seat
Take a story and ask the group each to choose a character who may or may not have been present to ‘be’ in the hot seat (Mrs Zacchaeus, the mother of the boy who gave away his lunch…)