FAQ

What is the Theatre Dictionary?

The Theatre Dictionary is your expert guide to theatre terms. Created by Theatre Development Fund, it uses videos and articles to define the theatre’s unique words and phrases, and it asks for your input as well.

Put another way, the Theatre Dictionary is both a reference tool and an art project.

What is the Theatre Development Fund?

TDF is the nation’s largest not-for-profit service organization for the performing arts. Through a variety of programs and services that promote education, access and conversation, it ensures an enduring appreciation of and engagement with live theatre. In addition to operating the TKTS booth in Duffy Square and the satellite booths at South Street Seaport and in downtown Brooklyn, TDF’s theatre education, accessibility, affordable ticketing and audience development programs help to make the unique experience of theatre available to diverse audiences while supporting New York’s theatre industry. Since it was founded in 1968, TDF has provided over 80 million people with access to performances at affordable prices while returning over $2 billion in revenue to thousands of productions.

For more information about TDF, please visit our website.

Why did Theatre Development Fund create the Theatre Dictionary?

To learn about the deeper mission of this project, just read this blog entry.

What kind of terms do you define?

You name it, we define it. Every area of the theatre has its own unique words and phrases, and we’re interested in all of them.

How often do you add new videos?

We’re aiming to add at least 2 new videos per month.

I have questions and/or feedback. How do I get in touch?

You can reach us via our contact page.

Who creates these videos?

Lots of people! Many videos are made by Theatre Development Fund. Others are made by professional theatre companies, professional theatre organizations, or college/university theatre programs.

Soon, we will be accepting video submissions from the general public and high school/middle school theatre programs.

I’m part of a professional theatre company, college/university theatre program, or professional theatre organization. How do I submit a video?

You can partner with TDF. We have a limited amount of commissioning funds for professional theatre companies, professional theatre organizations, and college/university theatre programs. If you would like to learn more about Theatre Dictionary commissions, please contact us via our contact page.

I’m part of a high school/middle school theatre program. How do I submit a video?

For the time being, we cannot accept video submissions that are not created as part of our commissioning program. As soon as possible, we will invite general users and high schools/middle schools to submit videos.

I’m a theatre fan, general user, or cool person who makes cool things. How do I submit a video?

For the time being, we cannot accept video submissions that are not created as part of our commissioning program. As soon as possible, we will invite general users and high schools/middle schools to submit videos.

May I submit a video for a term you’ve already defined?

Yes! We’re always happy to expand the conversation. However, it might be more fun to tackle something we haven’t already defined.

Which specifications must my video meet to be considered for the Theatre Dictionary?

We want you to be creative and have fun, so these are our only guidelines.

  • If you are commissioned, your video must adhere to our commissioning guidelines. These will be discussed with each commissioned organization.
  •  Your video must not be longer than 90 seconds
  • Your video MUST include the following details:
  • The video must open with a title card that shows the term being defined. A voiceover announcing the term is encouraged but not required. (i.e. – We hear someone say “strike,” and we see the word “strike” on screen)
  • A brief definition of the term must appear on screen at least once in the video.
  • The end of the video must reiterate the term being defined. (For instance, the final image could feature a character saying “strike” or feature a large poster that says “strike.” Be creative!)
  • Your video must NOT include nudity, profanity, overtly sexual content, or the use of drugs or alcohol. (Be clever, but keep it G or PG-rated.)

Do you accept every video that gets submitted?

No. Our editorial staff carefully considers each video and only selects those that meet the needs of the Theatre Dictionary.

Do you respond to every video submission?

No. Unfortunately, the volume of submissions prevents us from responding to every video.

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