Hey there friends. I Theatre has been around for a very long time. More than 15 years! We know that you, and your family, enjoy watching our production as much as us making these shows for you. So, we feel that now is the right time for you to see our guarded secrets on how to make a good production (shhh, don’t tell anyone else).
We began thinking to ourselves, So how do we introduce you the glamorous life of a theatre? The answer is simple! It’s THEATRE! That’s where Poultry Tales come in! Playing from 29 April to 14 May, join us as we let you and your family peep into the secret world of theatre. Using 3 famous stories to help you fly from your seats into our backstage and be part of our crew! As they say, birds of a feather, flock together!
To prepare you for your incoming chirping from your little fledgelings, we have prepared for you 10 things that you might not know about theatre that might help quench your fledgelings desire for knowledge. Reader’s discretion is advised, some information here might blow a child’s mind and even yours.
Top 10 Things You Might Not Know
1. The word theatre comes from an ancient Greek word meaning a ‘place for seeing.’ Back then, they don’t have television or mobile phones to entertain. So, the only place worth seeing is the theatre!
2. Some argue that the origins of theatre can be traced as early as Ancient Egyptian. But most people believe it is the Ancient Greeks who shaped the modern theatre you see today. During the golden era of British theatre, amphitheatres are introduced by Romans, which were copied from Greek design!
Stock image from: https://pixabay.com/
3. A production can cost between $100,000 and $500,000 to produce a full-scale show, and musicals are the MOST expensive. That’s enough to buy a small HDB flat (2017 circa).
Image credit: Housing Development Board
4. In one I Theatre’s show, the average size of cloth used can be up to 400 square metres including backdrops not including costumes. That’s roughly about 180 small sized T-shirts.
5. For a simple 45 mins show, I Theatre’s scripts are 15 to 30 pages long, in small fonts and short line spacing. Maybe another 30-40 pages of scores for the songs. BONUS FACT: A 45-minute play will need 45 hours of rehearsal. For a Musical or musical theatre, you can add the same number of hours for the choreography
6. Just in case you’re wondering why you can hear chimes, and sometimes bells, when you are at the lobby area; Those chime-y sounds signifies that we are ready to start the show and it’s time for you to find your seats! Especially if your seats are right in the middle of the main seating area.
Get back to your seats!
Sound credit: http://www.zedge.net/
7. Seats located on the main floor are called Stall seats. According to the book How does the show go on, by Thomas Schumacher (you should totally check out this amazing book by the way), the reason they are called Stall seats because back in Shakespeare’s time, the main floor was not the best sitting area; in fact, they didn’t sit at all – they stood just like horses in a “stall”.
Stock image from: https://pixabay.com/
8. It takes as much as 50 people to run one show, including backstage crew (that itself has 20 people), the technical team operating equipment in the theatre, performers, the creative team of designers and directors and not forgetting the front-of-house team and the ushers making sure that everyone is looked after as they enter the theatre
9. It can take up to three years – and more – from the initial idea. For example, Sing to The Dawn took three years of negotiation with the author before we reached an agreement allowing us to create the musical of the book. Usually, it takes about 12 months from the first ideas to the final script and then to the start of rehearsals.
10. There are many different types of theatres, here are some that you might be familiar with in Singapore:
Proscenium, where the action of the show takes place on stage at the front of the room. Proscenium also means “a big arch” you would see separating the seating area and the stage. We’ll be using a proscenium-type of theatre for Poultry Tales! As seen below, this image is taken from the circle seats. If you’re wondering how it looks like up there, here you go!
Image credit: Drama Centre Theatre
Amphitheatres are one of the oldest kinds of formal theatre. Introduced in Ancient Greece, amphitheatres are mostly found outdoors. They are designed to amplify sound since microphones weren’t available back then. Modern amphitheatres are placed indoors (mostly due to the air conditioning) and are often used by musical performances due to its natural amplifying design.
Black-Box – Theatre’s jack of all trades. If you’ve been to any of I Theatre’s productions performed in a black box; you’ll see that it’s literally a black box. There are no permanent stage or seating area. It gives the theatre full control in deciding what kind of performance to create. You can experience the black-box theatre if you’re going to our next production, The Little Green Frog!