Monday, March 19, 2012

Learning the Stage & Other Techniques

Many people think theater is all about just getting up there and performing, and that's it.  Nothing could be further than the truth.  There are many things that an actor needs to know in order to make sure he/she is on the same page with fellow actors, the director, and other technical staff.

Stage Positions

Upstage and Downstage.  The area nearest the audience and footlights is called downstage.  The area in the back of the stage, near the back wall of the stage or setting, is called upstage.
Stage Left and Stage Right.  Stage areas left and right are determined by the actor’s left and right as he or she faces the audience.  The director, therefore, sitting in the auditorium and watching the stage, reverses the areas when viewing them and relates them to the actor’s position on stage. 

*The area in the middle of the stage is called stage center*

 The Stage Areas              

  1.   9             6                3

      8             5                2

      7             4                1
    Down Left                          (Pretend this is the stage)
  2. Center Left
  3. Up Left
  4. Down Center
  5. Center
  6. Up Center
  7. Down Right
  8. Center Right               
  9. Up Right                              (Audience is out here)

  • As a general rule certain areas of the stage are stronger than others.
  • Down center is the “strongest” area, or the area that commands most attention.
  • Down left and down right are stronger than the up left and up right positions.

**Just to give you a bit of history as to why we have up and down stage.   Back in the day when they first built theaters, they had to build them on a ramp so that everyone in the audience could see everything.  The highest point of the ramp was at the back of the stage and there we get the the term (up stage); like going up a ramp.  Hope that made sense.  If you have any questions please visit my facebook group.  The link is below.  Thanks and God bless.**

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