Theatre Quotes

Words to the Wise
Quotations from a wide range of theatrical perspectives

Displaying 1 - 20 of 404. Show 5 | 10 | 20 | 40 | 60 results per page.
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Costumes

Your eyes will always go to red, which is why there is a lady in red in all my shows.

Florence Klotz It Happened On Broadway
Acting

Young actors, fear your admirers! Learn in time, from your first steps, to hear, understand and love the cruel truth about yourselves. Find out who can tell you that truth and talk of your art only with those who can tell you the truth.

Konstantin Stanislavsky http://www.giga-usa.com/quotes/topics/acting_t004.htm
Acting

You're an actor, are you? Well, all that means is: you are irresponsible, irrational, romantic, and incapable of handling an adult emotion or a universal concept without first reducing it to something personal, material, sensational -- and probably sexual.

George Herman

http://quotes.prolix.nu/Art/Theatre

Acting

You'd think is something one would grow out of. But you grow into it. The more you do, the more you realize how painfully easy it is to be lousy and how very difficult to be good.

Glenda Jackson People, March 1985
Acting

You think, you don't just speak. The lines come off the thoughts.

Jeremy Irons American Film magazine
Acting, Directing, General, Playwriting

You need three things in the theatre -- the play, the actors and the audience, and each must give something.

Kenneth Haigh http://www.satheatre.com/quotes.htm
General

You have two kinds of shows on Broadway -- revivals and the same kind of musicals over and over again, all spectacles. You get your tickets for 'The Lion King' a year in advance, and essentially a family comes as if to a picnic, and they pass on to their children the idea that that's what the theater is -- a spectacular musical you see once a year, a stage version of a movie. It has nothing to do with theater at all. It has to do with seeing what is familiar. We live in a recycled culture.

Stephen Sondheim NY Times 3/12/00
Acting, Shakespeare

You have to think about the big speeches in Shakespeare as the most important things the character has ever said; they need to be spoken with your chest cut open, your heart bare, and with tremendous passion. You need to tear the words from the sky. If you don't feel like you've run a marathon when you're done, you're not doing it right. It takes courage to open yourself up to an audience like that, letting them see your insides without desperately trying to show them--it takes practice.

Ben Crystal author of Shakespeare on Toast
Acting

You cannot tell an audience a lie. They know it before you do; before it's out of your mouth, they know it's a lie.

Elaine Stritch
Fundraising

You cannot expect people to give to you on an annual basis if they have never heard of your organization or are unaware of what you do in the community and why it is so important. As part of this annual giving plan, your board of directors (with staff help) needs to have a time of brainstorming so you can identify all your “target markets” i.e. those people with whom you need to establish a relationship.

NonprofitExpert.com http://www.nonprofitexpert.com/annualgiving.htm
Acting, Directing, General

You can't make theater happen without actors. The actor is the central ingredient in making theater happen. Audiences may come to theaters to see the work of stage managers, directors and producers, but the only people who can communicate theater magic to audiences, through ideas and emotions, are the actors. They are the only ones who can communicate this by themselves, and if necessary, they can get along without you. But you can't make theater without the actor.

Lawrence Stern Stage Management
Acting

You can't learn to act unless you're criticized. If you tie that criticism to your childhood insecurities you'll have a terrible time. Instead, you must take criticism objectively, pertaining it only to the work being done.

Sanford Meisner http://www.aldersonstudio.com/quotes/index.html
Acting

You can't be funny unless you're tragic, and you can't be tragic unless you're funny.

Elaine Stritch
Acting

You can throw away the privilege of acting, but that would be such a shame. The tribe has elected you to tell its story. You are the shaman/healer, that's what the storyteller is, and I think it's important for actors to appreciate that. Too often actors think it's all about them, when in reality it's all about the audience being able to recognize themselves in you.

Ben Kingsley
Acting

You ask my advice about acting? Speak clearly, don't bump into the furniture and if you must have motivation, think of your pay packet on Friday.

Noel Coward www.musicals101.com/noelquot.htm
Playwriting

Writing a play, you start with less, so more is demanded of you. It's as if you have to not only write a symphony, but invent the instruments as well.

David Ives http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/d/david_ives.html
Costumes

Why don't I just give you some money, then you can buy whatever you want to wear on stage. You obviously want a shopper, and I am merely a designer. [said to an uncooperative actress during a costume fitting]

Nan Cibula-Jenkins The Audience Book of Theatre Quotations, by Louis Phillips
Playwriting

Why did I write? Because I found life unsatisfactory.

Tennessee Williams
Playwriting

White male playwrights' works continue to dominate production slates. Sometimes it seems easier for them to have the texts of their driver's licenses produced than for the female or non-white playwright to have her best play produced. The reality is, they are more often given that all-important opportunity to fail than the women's play or ethnic play.

Velina Hasu Houston http://www.pubinfo.vcu.edu/artweb/playwriting/quotes.html
Musical Theatre

Wherever it came from, the musical came with its hair mussed and with an innocent, indolent, irreverent look on its bright, bland face.

Walter Kerr http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/w/walter_kerr.html

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