Enjoying your first time at the theatre

Enjoying your first time at the theatre

It is your first time – weak knees, sweaty palms, heavy hands. You hear whispers and then silence. The lights go out. Panic rises in your stomach and you feel slightly nauseous.

If the above describes your worst fears about being at a stage theatre production for the first timefret not. With just three easy tips, you will be able to navigate the world of theatre like a seasoned audience member and enjoy your first outing to the theatre.

So, sit back, read on, and  try out these tips at the Singapore International Festival of Arts, which just happens to be on now.

Read up (a little) before the performance

Think of the process as watching a teaser trailer, and don’t worry too much about spoilers. With theatre, being informed of the plot and what to expect usually adds to the anticipation and appreciation. You wouldn’t want to go to a tragedy prepared to laugh your head off.

Once you are in the theatre, however, put aside what you have read for the moment and immerse yourself fully in the show. Allow the play and acting to speak to you, and shine a light on your life, emotions and views about things.

Don’t use your phone during the performance

Imagine being engrossed with what is happening on stage when suddenly, a bright glare from a phone screen gets in your face – pure disturbance. So, don’t be that person causing the nuisance. Few things in life cannot wait until the intermission; you can take care of any pending business then.

Photography is also typically disallowed during shows, so more reason to put your phone away. But if you enjoyed the performance so much that you cannot resist sharing the moment with a photo or video, snap it after the show has ended, during curtain call, and without flash.

Clap at the appropriate time

If you aren’t sure of when to clap during a show – other than after the finale – take cues from those around you. A good rule of thumb, however, would be when an act has ended. And regardless of whether you enjoyed the act, or not, it doesn’t hurt to show your appreciation to the actors and crew for the time, devotion and effort they poured into the performance.

Details on the Singapore International Festival of Arts here.


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