|Theatre at the Fort||
Types of Stages
To be honest, a stage can be just about anywhere. If there is an audience, actors, and some sort of action going on, the stage is whereever the actors are. Sometimes, that can happen in a park with the audience forming a circle and the actors in the center. For the purpose of this unit, however, we are speaking of architectural structures that were built or modified for the express purpose of housing theatre productions.
After you discuss the types of stages listed on the right, think about the advantages and disadvantages of each. Would every play fit every stage?
Words to Know:
Arena / Theatre-in-the-Round Stage
Black Box stage
-- the stage is framed by a "proscenium arch"
-- downstage of the main curtain is often an apron, or extended playing area
-- the main playing area can be separated by a curtain
-- Audience on three sides
-- Main playing area "thrusts" into audience
-- A curtain may be used to separate the extreme upstage area from the audience's view
Arena / Theatre In-the-Round
-- Audience on all sides of the stage
-- Movement for actors is more naturalistic
-- Fewer opportunities for set design
Black Box Stage
-- Usually not built, originally, as a theatre space
-- Actors and audience are very close to one another
-- Can usually be configured to create various sizes and shapes of stage, according to the directors' and designers' wishes