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Portal:Theatre

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The Theatre Portal

Ancient Greece theatre in Taormina, Sicily, Italy

Theatre or theater is a collaborative form of performing art that uses live performers, usually actors or actresses, to present the experience of a real or imagined event before a live audience in a specific place, often a stage. The performers may communicate this experience to the audience through combinations of gesture, speech, song, music, and dance. Elements of art, such as painted scenery and stagecraft such as lighting are used to enhance the physicality, presence and immediacy of the experience. The specific place of the performance is also named by the word "theatre" as derived from the Ancient Greek θέατρον (théatron, "a place for viewing"), itself from θεάομαι (theáomai, "to see", "to watch", "to observe").

Modern theatre includes performances of plays and musical theatre. The art forms of ballet and opera are also theatre and use many conventions such as acting, costumes and staging. They were influential to the development of musical theatre; see those articles for more information. (Full article...)

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Broadway Playbill
The Bat is a three-act comedy-mystery play by Mary Roberts Rinehart and Avery Hopwood that was first produced by Lincoln Wagenhals and Collin Kemper. The play opened on Broadway on August 23, 1920. At a rented summer home, Cornelia Van Gorder and guests search for stolen money while being stalked by a masked criminal known as "the Bat". The play originated as an adaptation of Rinehart's 1908 mystery novel The Circular Staircase. It was a critical and commercial success, running for 867 performances in New York and 327 in London, with tours by several road companies. It was revived twice on Broadway, in 1937 and 1953. It had several adaptations, including a 1926 novelization credited to Rinehart and Hopwood but ghostwritten by Stephen Vincent Benét. Three film adaptations were produced: The Bat (1926), The Bat Whispers (1930), and The Bat (1959). The play and its adaptations inspired other comedy-mysteries with similar settings, and influenced the creation of the comic-book superhero Batman.

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Noël Coward, c. 1920s
Noël Coward (1899–1973) was an English playwright, composer, director, actor and singer, known for his wit, flamboyance, and what Time magazine called "a sense of personal style, a combination of cheek and chic, pose and poise". Coward achieved enduring success as a playwright, publishing more than 50 plays from his teens onwards. Many of his works, such as Hay Fever, Private Lives, Design for Living, Present Laughter and Blithe Spirit, have remained in the regular theatre repertoire. He composed hundreds of songs, in addition to well over a dozen musical theatre works (including the operetta Bitter Sweet and comic revues), poetry, several volumes of short stories, the novel Pomp and Circumstance, and a three-volume autobiography. Coward's stage and film acting and directing career spanned six decades, during which he starred in many of his own works. Coward won an Academy Honorary Award in 1943 for his naval film drama, In Which We Serve, and was knighted in 1969. In the 1950s he achieved fresh success as a cabaret performer, performing his own songs, such as "Mad Dogs and Englishmen", "London Pride" and "Don't Let's Be Beastly to the Germans". His plays and songs achieved new popularity in the 1960s and 1970s, and his work and style continue to influence popular culture.

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Will Rogers
The theater is a great equalizer: it is the only place where the poor can look down on the rich.

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