Theatre vocabulary

Act Curtain (Main Curtain, Grand Drape) - The principal curtain used to close off the stage at the proscenium arch. Usually it is a comparatively decorative fabric curtain designed to harmonize with auditorium architecture.
Actor/Actress - A male or female person who performs a role in a play, work of theatre, or movie.
Antagonist - A person or a situation that opposes another character’s goals or desires.
Apron (Forestage) - The portion of the stage space that is downstage of the proscenium.
Articulation - The clear and precise pronunciation of words.
Asbestos (Fire Curtain) - A flat flameproof curtain hung to prevent the communication of fire to the house.
Auditorium (House) - The part of the theatre devoted to the audience.
Backdrop - A large, flat scenic element, usually of canvas or muslin that hangs at the rear of a scene.
Batten - A long, metal bar on which lights, scenery, or theatrical drapes can be hung.
Blocking - The planning and working out of the movements of actors on stage.
Border - A scenic element or masking piece running horizontally the width of the stage to mask overhead space and equipment.
Catharsis - The purification or purgation of the emotions (such as pity, fear, grief, etc.) affected in a work of tragedy.
Center stage - The center of the area defined as the stage.
Character - A personality or role an actor/actress re-creates.
Characterization - The development and portrayal of a personality through thought, action, dialogue, costuming, and makeup.
Climax - The point of greatest dramatic tension or transition in a theatrical work.
Concentration - The ability of the actor/actress to be “in” character - that is, to be like the character s/he is portraying – in dialog, attitude, carriage, gait, etc.
Cyc (short for Cyclorama) - A curved backdrop used to represent sky or limitless space.
Electric - A special batten rigged to accommodate the hanging of electrical equipment and provided with built-in electrical circuitry.
Floor Plan (Ground Plan) - A scale diagram (top view) showing the location of all architectural members and scenic elements on the stage.
Fly Gallery - A platform above the stage used by crew members to load and unload weight from the counterweight side of the fly system.
Fly Loft (Flies) - Overhead storage space for hanging scenery, machinery, and lights above audience sightlines.
Leg - A piece of vertical scenery hung at the sides of the stage to mask the wing space.
Orchestra Pit or Pit - A sunken area immediately in front of the stage to accommodate an orchestra. Often part of the forestage may be a hydraulic lift that converts from stage-level playing space to an adjustable-depth pit.
Proscenium Arch - The opening in the wall between the stage and the auditorium.
Teaser - A horizontal masking border that is farthest downstage at the top of the stage limiting the height of visible stage space.
Trap - A removable section of stage floor.
Wing - The offstage space at the left or right sides of the stage usually masked from view of the audience.
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