Theatre Terms

image of question markHere you'll find over 1000 definitions of theatrical terms, from Aside, Beam Angle, and Camlock, to Upstaging, VU Meter, and Wagon.  Fully searchable, our glossary is helpful for technical staff, directors, actors, producers, or anyone wanting to better understand the inner workings of theatre.

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Term Definition Link
MASKS OF COMEDY AND TRAGEDY The masks represent two of the nine Greek muses. Comedy is represented by Melpomene [mel-po-men-ee] and tragedy by Thalia [thay-lee-a]. In Greek mythology, the nine muses were goddesses of the arts and sciences, and were daughters of Zeus, the king of the gods, and Mnemosyne, the goddess of memory. Melpomene, the goddess of tragedy, is usually shown holding a tragic mask, the club of Hercules and a wreath of vine leaves. Thalia, the muse of comedy, is depicted holding a comic mask, a shepherd's crook, and a wreath of ivy. The muses were worshiped throughout ancient Greece.
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