The TDF Theatre Dictionary Blog

Official news and announcements.

blocking

Welcome to the Theatre Dictionary’s conversation about the term blocking.

On blocking’s official page, we define the term as a set of predetermined movements for actors onstage. But now we want to know what the term blocking means to you. You can use the comments section to tell us.

– As a performer, have you ever argued with a director over your character’s blocking?

– As an audience member, have you ever seen some blocking go hilariously wrong? What happened?

If you’d like to make a video of your own about the term blocking, then we’d love to hear from you! Just email us through our contact page. Tell us about yourself and why you want to make a video. We’ll be in touch ASAP and give you details on how to add your video to the Theatre Dictionary!

Cheers,

Mark Blankenship, Theatre Dictionary editor

claque

Welcome to the Theatre Dictionary’s conversation about the term claque.

On claque’s official page, we define the term as an organized group of professional applauders. But now we want to know what the term claque means to you. You can use the comments section to tell us.

– Have you ever been in the audience and wondered if the people hooting and hollering next to you were paid to react that way?

– Has a friend or family member ever asked you to come to a show and cheer extra loudly for them?

If you’d like to make a video of your own about the term claque, then we’d love to hear from you! Just email us through our contact page. Tell us about yourself and why you want to make a video. We’ll be in touch ASAP and give you details on how to add your video to the Theatre Dictionary!

Cheers,

Mark Blankenship, Theatre Dictionary editor

stage.door.new

Welcome to the Theatre Dictionary’s conversation about the term stage door.

On stage door’s official page, we define the term as a special theatre entrance that gives actors, crew members and other people working on a show direct access to backstage areas and dressing rooms. But now we want to know what the term stage door means to you. You can use the comments section to tell us.

– Have you ever waited outside a stage door to meet one of your favorite theatre performers? Who was it, and did you get an autograph or take a photo?

– For those who’ve worked on a show, do you have any crazy stage door fan stories? The funnier the better!

If you’d like to make a video of your own about the term stage door, then we’d love to hear from you! Just email us through our contact page. Tell us about yourself and why you want to make a video. We’ll be in touch ASAP and give you details on how to add your video to the Theatre Dictionary!

Cheers,

Mark Blankenship, Theatre Dictionary editor

line.reading

Welcome to the Theatre Dictionary’s conversation about the term line reading.

On line reading’s official page, we define the term as when an actor is directed to say a line in a specific way. But now we want to know what the term line reading means to you. You can use the comments section to tell us.

– Has a director ever given you a specific way of reading a line? Was it helpful or was it at odds with how you wanted to say it?

– Do you think a line reading is inherently a bad thing?

If you’d like to make a video of your own about line reading, then we’d love to hear from you! Just email us through our contact page. Tell us about yourself and why you want to make a video. We’ll be in touch ASAP and give you details on how to add your video to the Theatre Dictionary!

Cheers,

Mark Blankenship, Theatre Dictionary editor

dramaturg.cropped

Welcome to the Theatre Dictionary’s conversation about the term dramaturg.

On dramaturg’s official page, we define the term as a theatre professional who brings an objective eye and creative input, along with deep research, to a theatrical work. But now we want to know what the term dramaturg means to you. You can use the comments section to tell us.

– Have you ever collaborated with a dramaturg? Was it fruitful?

– Do you know the names of any dramaturgs? (Don’t worry—this question doesn’t affect your theatre IQ).

If you’d like to make a video of your own about dramaturg, then we’d love to hear from you! Just email us through our contact page. Tell us about yourself and why you want to make a video. We’ll be in touch ASAP and give you details on how to add your video to the Theatre Dictionary!

Cheers,

Mark Blankenship, Theatre Dictionary editor

fight.call.second.crop

Welcome to the Theatre Dictionary’s conversation about the term fight call.

On fight call’s official page, we define the term as a special rehearsal where actors in a fight scene meet to go over their movements. But now we want to know what the term fight call means to you. You can use the comments section to tell us.

– Have you ever participated in a fight call? Did the director choreograph the movements or was a stage combat specialist brought in?

– If so, did anyone get hurt? What happened?

If you’d like to make a video of your own about fight call, then we’d love to hear from you! Just email us through our contact page. Tell us about yourself and why you want to make a video. We’ll be in touch ASAP and give you details on how to add your video to the Theatre Dictionary!

Cheers,

Mark Blankenship, Theatre Dictionary editor

italian-run-screencap

Welcome to the Theatre Dictionary’s conversation about the term Italian run.

On Italian run’s official page, we define the term as a rehearsal in which the actors deliver their lines and perform the action at a much faster rate. But now we want to know what the term Italian run means to you. You can use the comments section to tell us.

– Have you ever done a speed-through rehearsal, a.k.a. Italian run? Did it help quicken the pace of the show you were in?

– Before this video, had you ever heard the term Italian run? Or did you call it a speed through/Italian rehearsal/Russian run? Seems like there are so many terms for the same kind of rehearsal!

If you’d like to make a video of your own about Italian run, then we’d love to hear from you! Just email us through our contact page. Tell us about yourself and why you want to make a video. We’ll be in touch ASAP and give you details on how to add your video to the Theatre Dictionary!

Cheers,

Mark Blankenship, Theatre Dictionary editor

upstaging

Welcome to the Theatre Dictionary’s conversation about the term upstaging.

On upstaging’s official page, we define the term as “when one actor takes attention away from another performer.” But now we want to know what the term upstaging means to you. You can use the comments section to tell us.

– Have you ever seen a particularly egregious case of upstaging? What show was it and what happened?

– As a performer, have you ever been accused of upstaging your costars? What were you doing?

If you’d like to make a video of your own about the term upstaging, then we’d love to hear from you! Just email us through our contact page. Tell us about yourself and why you want to make a video. We’ll be in touch ASAP and give you details on how to add your video to the Theatre Dictionary!

Cheers,

Mark Blankenship, Theatre Dictionary editor

improv

Welcome to the Theatre Dictionary’s conversation about the term improv.

On improv’s official page, we say it’s “a direct line to the truth… whether it is an improv comedy show, an improvised play, or improvisation to make discoveries during rehearsal.” But now we want to know what the term improv means to you. You can use the comments section to tell us.

– Have you ever done improv on stage? Was it during a performance or in rehearsal?

– Do you have any stories about improvising in real life? I know I’ve had to improvise a lot as a parent whenever my kid asks me a sensitive question… like who ate all the Halloween candy.

– What’s the funniest improv bit you’ve ever seen in the theatre?

If you’d like to make a video of your own about improv, then we’d love to hear from you! Just email us through our contact page. Tell us about yourself and why you want to make a video. We’ll be in touch ASAP and give you details on how to add your video to the Theatre Dictionary!

Cheers,

Mark Blankenship, Theatre Dictionary editor

papering

Welcome to the Theatre Dictionary’s conversation about the term papering the house.

On papering the house’s official page, we define the term as “distributing free tickets to early performances of a production to boost audiences and spread word of mouth.” But now we want to know what the term papering the house means to you. You can use the comments section to tell us.

– Have you ever received free tickets to a show?

– If so, how did you get the invite? From a cast member? An email list? Elsewhere?

– Did you ever pay for a show only to realize most of the other audience members were “paper”?

If you’d like to make a video of your own about papering the house, then we’d love to hear from you! Just email us through our contact page. Tell us about yourself and why you want to make a video. We’ll be in touch ASAP and give you details on how to add your video to the Theatre Dictionary!

Cheers,

Mark Blankenship, Theatre Dictionary editor