Theater - High School

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  1. acoustics
    the study of the physical properties of sound
  2. action
    the series of events that form a plot
  3. adaptation
    a written work that has been recast in a new form
  4. ad-lib
    perform without preparation
  5. amphitheater
    a sloping gallery with seats for spectators
  6. antagonist
    someone who offers opposition
  7. apron
    the part of a stage between the curtain and the orchestra
  8. archetype
    something that serves as a model
  9. articulation
    the aspect of pronunciation that shapes the sounds of speech
  10. aside
    a line spoken by an actor not intended for others on stage
  11. atmosphere
    a particular environment or surrounding influence
  12. audition
    a test of the suitability of a performer
  13. backdrop
    scenery hung at the rear of a stage
  14. backlighting
    lighting from behind
  15. backstage
    a stage area out of sight of the audience
  16. bit part
    a small role
  17. book
    a written version of a play or other dramatic composition
  18. box office
    the office where tickets of admission are sold
  19. Broadway
    a street in Manhattan that passes through Times Square
  20. cast
    the actors in a play, film, or television show
  21. casting
    the choice of actors to play particular roles in a play or movie
  22. catharsis
    purging of emotional tensions
  23. center stage
    the central area on a theater stage
  24. characterization
    dramatically representing a person on stage
  25. claque
    a group of followers hired to applaud at a performance
  26. classical
    characteristic of the ancient Greek and Roman cultures
  27. climax
    the decisive moment in a novel or play
  28. comedy
    light and humorous drama with a happy ending
  29. commedia dell'arte
    Italian comedy of the 16th to 18th centuries improvised from standardized situations and stock characters
  30. company
    an organization of performers and theatrical personnel
  31. conflict
    opposition in a work of fiction between characters or forces
  32. costume designer
    someone who designs or supplies costumes
  33. cue
    a reminder for some action or speech
  34. curtain call
    an appearance by actors or performers at the end of the concert or play in order to acknowledge the applause of the audience
  35. deadpan
    deliberately impassive in manner
  36. debut
    appear for the first time in public
  37. delivery
    characteristic style or manner of expressing oneself orally
  38. denouement
    the resolution of the main complication of a literary work
  39. deus ex machina
    an agent who appears unexpectedly to solve a difficulty
  40. dialogue
    the lines spoken by characters in drama or fiction
  41. diction
    the articulation of speech to be intelligible to an audience
  42. director
    one who supervises the actors and action in a play
  43. double
    a stand-in for movie stars to perform dangerous stunts
  44. double take
    a delayed reaction indicating surprise
  45. downstage
    the front half of the stage (as seen from the audience)
  46. drama
    the literary genre of works intended for the theater
  47. dramatic irony
    when the audience understands something the characters don't
  48. dramatis personae
    the actors in a play
  49. dramatization
    a representation intended for performance
  50. dramaturgy
    the art of writing and producing plays
  51. dress rehearsal
    a full uninterrupted rehearsal in costumes shortly before the first performance
  52. encore
    an extra performance in response to audience demand
  53. ensemble
    a cast other than the principals
  54. entr'acte
    the interlude between two sections of a play
  55. epilogue
    a short speech by an actor at the end of a play
  56. extra
    a minor actor in crowd scenes
  57. farce
    a comedy characterized by broad satire
  58. finale
    the concluding part of any performance
  59. flashback
    a transition in a story to an earlier event or scene
  60. flat
    a wooden frame covered with painted canvas
  61. footlights
    theater light at the front of a stage that illuminate the set and actors
  62. foreshadowing
    the act of providing vague advance indications
  63. gaffer
    an electrician responsible for lighting on a movie or TV set
  64. gel
    a thin translucent membrane used over stage lights for color effects
  65. genre
    a class of art having a characteristic form or technique
  66. greasepaint
    a greasy substance used as makeup by actors
  67. greenroom
    a backstage room in a theater where performers rest or have visitors
  68. hamartia
    the character flaw or error of a tragic hero
  69. house
    a building where performances can be presented
  70. houselights
    lights that illuminate the audience's part of a theater or other auditorium
  71. improvisation
    a performance given without planning or preparation
  72. ingenue
    the role of an innocent artless young woman in a play
  73. Konstantin Stanislavsky
    Russian actor and theater director who trained his actors to emphasize the psychological motivation of their roles (1863-1938)
  74. lead
    an actor who plays a principal role
  75. libretto
    the words of an opera or musical play
  76. lighting
    the craft of providing artificial light
  77. loge
    balcony consisting of the forward section of a theater mezzanine
  78. matinee
    a theatrical performance held during the daytime
  79. melodrama
    a story with characters behaving in an extreme emotional way
  80. method acting
    an acting technique introduced by Stanislavsky in which the actor recalls emotions or reactions from his or her own life and uses them to identify with the character being portrayed
  81. mezzanine
    first or lowest balcony
  82. mime
    an actor who communicates entirely by gesture
  83. miscast
    cast an actor, singer, or dancer in an unsuitable role
  84. mise en scene
    an arrangement that shows where a play or film takes place
  85. monologue
    a dramatic speech by a single actor
  86. morality play
    an allegorical play popular in the 15th and 16th centuries
  87. motivation
    psychological feature arousing action toward a desired goal
  88. musical theater
    a play or film whose action and dialogue is interspersed with singing and dancing
  89. naturalism
    an artistic movement emphasizing realistic description
  90. offstage
    situated or taking place in the area of a stage not visible to the audience
  91. opera
    a drama set to music
  92. operetta
    a short amusing opera
  93. orchestra
    seating on the main floor in a theater
  94. orchestra pit
    lowered area in front of a stage where an orchestra accompanies the performers
  95. overture
    orchestral music at the beginning of an opera or musical
  96. pantomime
    a performance using gestures and movements without words
  97. parody
    a composition that imitates or misrepresents a style
  98. pastiche
    a work of art that imitates the style of some previous work
  99. pitch
    the high or low quality of a sound
  100. playbill
    a printed program for a theatrical performance
  101. playwright
    someone who writes plays
  102. premiere
    the first public performance of a play or movie
  103. principal
    an actor who plays a lead role
  104. producer
    someone who finances and supervises the making of a show
  105. production
    presentation for the stage or screen or radio or television
  106. project
    cause to be heard
  107. prologue
    an introductory section of a novel or other literary work
  108. promptbook
    the copy of the playscript used by the prompter
  109. prop
    an object used on the set of a play or movie
  110. proscenium
    the part of a stage between the curtain and the orchestra
  111. proscenium arch
    the arch over the opening in the proscenium wall
  112. protagonist
    the principal character in a work of fiction
  113. realism
    artistic movement that represents the world accurately
  114. repertory
    a collection of works that an artist or company can perform
  115. reprise
    a repetition of a short musical passage
  116. role
    an actor's portrayal of someone in a play, film, etc...
  117. run-through
    an uninterrupted rehearsal
  118. script
    a written version of a play or other dramatic composition
  119. set
    scenery used to identify a location of a dramatic production
  120. sight gag
    a joke whose effect is achieved by visual means rather than by speech (as in a movie)
  121. slapstick
    a type of comedy characterized by pranks and physical humor
  122. soliloquy
    a dramatic speech giving the illusion of unspoken reflection
  123. special effect
    an effect used to produce scenes that cannot be achieved by normal techniques (especially on film)
  124. spirit gum
    an adhesive solution made of gum and ether and used to attach false hair to skin
  125. spotlight
    a lamp that produces a strong beam of light to illuminate a restricted area; used to focus attention of a stage performer
  126. stage crew
    crew of workers who move scenery or handle properties in a theatrical production
  127. stage direction
    instruction or description written in the script of a play
  128. stage fright
    fear that affects a person about to face an audience
  129. stage left
    the part of the stage on the actor's left as the actor faces the audience
  130. stage manager
    someone who supervises the physical aspects in the production of a show and who is in charge of the stage when the show is being performed
  131. stage right
    the part of the stage on the actor's right as the actor faces the audience
  132. stage whisper
    a loud whisper that can be overheard
  133. staging
    the production of a drama on the stage
  134. suspense
    excited anticipation of an approaching climax
  135. tableau
    any dramatic scene
  136. theater in the round
    a theater arranged with seats around at least three sides of the stage
  137. theater of the absurd
    plays stressing the irrational or illogical aspects of life, usually to show that modern life is pointless
  138. thespian
    a theatrical performer
  139. thrust stage
    a theater stage that extends out into the audience's part of a theater and has seats on three sides
  140. top billing
    the advertisement of a star's name at the top of a theatrical poster
  141. tragedy
    drama exciting terror or pity
  142. tragicomedy
    a dramatic composition involving elements of both tragedy and comedy usually with the tragic predominating
  143. travesty
    a composition that imitates or misrepresents a style
  144. troupe
    an organization of performers and associated personnel
  145. typecast
    select for the same kind of role repeatedly
  146. understudy
    an actor able to replace a regular performer when required
  147. upstage
    at or toward the rear of a platform for performers
  148. vaudeville
    a genre of variety show with songs, comic acts, etc.
  149. wing
    a stage area out of sight of the audience
Created on February 3, 2017 (updated March 29, 2017)

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