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WOULD YOU RATHER BE ONSTAGE OR BACKSTAGE?

 
 
mac11
 
Reply Mon 24 Feb, 2003 06:20 pm
Do you love being in the spotlight? Or would you rather enjoy the glow from the wings? Realjohnboy and cicerone imposter were reminiscing about their school and community theatre experiences on another thread, and I thought it would be fun to hear more.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 0 • Views: 8,356 • Replies: 60
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patiodog
 
  1  
Reply Mon 24 Feb, 2003 06:59 pm
Have done quite a bit of both. Prefer the creative alternative, but if that came down to designing (or directing) or performing, I preferred the former.


Make of that what you will.
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Phoenix32890
 
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Reply Mon 24 Feb, 2003 07:04 pm
I have not been in the theatre, but I have become involved in a community chorus, and we put on shows. I love to "ham it up" onstage. I emote like crazy, and get such a kick out of it! Very Happy
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Lightwizard
 
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Reply Mon 24 Feb, 2003 08:09 pm
I drift in and out of being in the spotlight but most of my work is behind the scenes. How can a salesperson slip it to you if it's all up front? (Kidding). Laughing
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Peace and Love
 
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Reply Mon 24 Feb, 2003 08:16 pm
I was in some plays, way back in the old days, when I was in college. And I loved it! We had so much fun! We did Summer Stock Theatre, on campus each summer. We put on 8 plays in 7 weeks! The final play was always a big musical production, complete with live orchestra. Ah, yes, good memories!!

Very Happy
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msolga
 
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Reply Mon 24 Feb, 2003 10:02 pm
Always the set painter! Very Happy
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gezzy
 
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Reply Tue 25 Feb, 2003 07:11 am
I'm way too nervous on stage, so I'll take the back stage pass ;-)
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bree
 
  1  
Reply Tue 25 Feb, 2003 08:37 am
I'm a highly skilled member of the audience. (That isn't entirely a joke -- being a good audience member requires skills, like courtesy and attentiveness, that a lot of people who go to the theatre these days don't seem to have.) And, while the role of audience member has (or should have) no lines, I like to think of it as serving a godlike kind of function: unless we're watching, what the actors do is meaningless.
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flyboy804
 
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Reply Tue 25 Feb, 2003 08:43 am
Bree, you just beat me to it. I am a lover of the performing arts but am as non artistic as they come; hence I want to sit in the audience and let the results of the work of those who are artistic wash over me.
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Heeven
 
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Reply Tue 25 Feb, 2003 09:01 am
I would be a backstager. I like being in charge of stuff, organizing, and ordering others around.

People who know me automatically assume that I'd like the spotlight but while I can ham it up in front of a few people spontaneously, I am terrified of public-speaking or performing in front of a large group of people.

I would make an excellent heckler because I can shout out some quips and then hide behind the seat!

The only way I would perform is if I could be masked so no-one could see the fear in my face.
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mac11
 
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Reply Tue 25 Feb, 2003 09:05 am
I did a little acting in high school and college, and came to the conclusion that my overwhelming stage fright was not worth whatever pleasure I got from being onstage.

That freed me up to make a career out of being a stage manager, which was where my talent really lay anyway! Very Happy

I agree with you, bree, that being a good audience member may someday become a lost art.
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chatoyant
 
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Reply Tue 25 Feb, 2003 09:17 am
I have helped out with the local theater group as the photographer for several of their plays. I also helped with the set - painting, arranging, etc. Being the photographer, I attended several rehearsals and found it fascinating to see how it all came together. Then, when my work was done, I attended the play as an audience member. It's been a great experience to be able to see it from the very beginning to the "finished product."

I always wished I could act, but I know stage fright would take over. Being involved in the way I have, or being an audience member are both things I really enjoy. There's nothing like a live play!
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Raggedyaggie
 
  1  
Reply Tue 25 Feb, 2003 10:23 am
Bree and Flyboy have expressed my sentiments exactly. I love the theater. Not having one ounce of talent, myself, I can only admire and appreciate those who do, whether it be in the creation of a play/musical, or in the actual performance. I have often thought I might make a good critic. I would print the "good", omit the "bad" and let the audience decide for itself. And if the audience can't think for itself, my answer would be "stay home". Laughing Hats off to all you talented guys who do all the work for my pleasure.
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realjohnboy
 
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Reply Tue 25 Feb, 2003 07:21 pm
This thread seems to have run its course...but a perhaps final thought: Many of you used the phrase "stage fright." That's never been a problem for me...when I've rehearsed my lines or my character, I could stand up in front of an audience of thousands.
Heeven from Boston (10:01 am) speaks of being "spontaneous" and/or a "ham." That's great. When I go to a wedding or a funeral I struggle to avoid hiding in the corner, unable to engage in
"small talk" with strangers. -rjb-
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JoanneDorel
 
  1  
Reply Tue 25 Feb, 2003 09:29 pm
Back stage for me I love the techincal aspects of putting on a play. Ant the there is that part where I cannot act Embarrassed
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BillyFalcon
 
  1  
Reply Wed 26 Feb, 2003 10:16 pm
Heeven, I am also quite terrified of public speaking. Having taught it off and on, for some thirty years made a small difference. But keep in mind that the f irst lady of the theatre, Helen hayes, is said to have tossed her cookies each night of performances. There have been others.
I find acting a bit less stressful because the character is like having a mask in front of you. In public speaking, it is you and you alone, baby.

Bree, you are absolutely right about audiences needing skills. You know, there are lots of parallels between theatre and sports. Americans intuitively know that it takes skill and knowledge to actively enjoy a football game, but are reluctant to agree that the same is true of theatre (and movies).
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Heeven
 
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Reply Thu 27 Feb, 2003 08:58 am
I will avoid public speaking at all costs. I don't toss my cookies but I do have other nervous side effects before I have to make a presentation. I am often so relieved afterwards that I could fall down and nap! But still the dread of doing it again is torturous. I would do anything to get out of it, including faking an illness.
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midnight
 
  1  
Reply Thu 27 Feb, 2003 09:56 am
I'm all about working behind the scenes. I usually did makeup and I found there to be just as much if not more creative outlets backstage.
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colorific
 
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Reply Sat 1 Mar, 2003 11:02 am
I was taught in theater it's all collaboration; and have acted in plays in which we built sets, etc. and many actors perform other tasks at different times; costumes, lights, etc.
Nothing to me compares to the electric feeling of performing something...a poem, a lecture, a character, an improv, or a song. Not that I prefer it over one creative task or other but that it is it's own, intensly heightened experience. It is a type of poise and focus, a level of awareness that takes years to master.. to beempathetic and " in the moment " to establish "public solitude"; just fascinating to me.
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mac11
 
  1  
Reply Sat 1 Mar, 2003 12:13 pm
Welcome to A2K, colorific.

I completely agree with you about the collaborative nature of theatre. I think that students who are studying acting or technical theatre should definitely be required to work in other areas - to gain an appreciation of the difficulties and to help them understand how it all comes together.
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