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"HEADS ON STAGE"  look up translate image
A shouted warning (often just "Heads !") for staff to be aware of activity above them. Also used when an object is being dropped from above.
100 VOLT LINE  look up translate image
Way of sending speaker signals over long distances without losing signal strength. Transformers are used in each speaker cabinet to convert the signal from 100 Volts to a more usable level.HAND LINE The rope, typically manila, used to set counterweight arbor (and the associated rigging) into motion. Also known as a purchase line. HEAD BLOCK Multiple sheave block mounted on the beam above a counterweight arbor through which pass the lift lines used in the rigging set. HOUSE General...(more)
A-TYPE  look up translate image
See Jack
A.J.  look up translate image
Jargon for an Adjustable Spanner.
A.L.D.  look up translate image
Association of Lighting Designers.(UK)
A.N.S.I.  look up translate image
American National Standards Institute.
AB  look up translate image
See StereophonicAPRON Part of the stage which protrudes past the proscenium towards the audience. Also known as forestage or thrust.
AB POWERING  look up translate image
See Phantom Power.
ABTT  look up translate image
The Association of British Theatre Technicians..
ACOUSTIC PICK-UP  look up translate image
See Pick-Up.
ACOUSTICS  look up translate image
The behaviour of sound and its study. The acoustics of a room depend on its size and shape and the amount and position of sound-absorbing and reflecting material.
ACT DROP  look up translate image
Front cloth or tabs lowered during intervals. Especially pantomime / musicals.
ACTING AREA  look up translate image
That area within the performance space within which the actor may move in full view of the audience. (Also name of early Strand down-lighting floodlight - known as "Ack Ack").
ACTIVE  look up translate image
A piece of circuitry is termed active if it needs a power supply for it to function. (Active DI box, Active crossover etc.) Circuitry that needs no additional power supply is termed passive (eg resistors & capacitors in a crossover). Passive circuits use the electrical sound signal itself to operate the components. OR A piece of circuitry is termed active if it amplifies a signal supplied to it. A passive circuit does not increase the level of a signal.
ADAM  look up translate image
See Digital Recording.
ADAPTOR (OR SPLITTER)  look up translate image
Connector which allows two or more electrical devices to be connected to a single power outlet. The connection is parallel, that is, each device is fed the same voltage, but the current is divided between them. Sometimes known as a "Twofer". See Series Splitter, Jumper and Grelco.
ADAT  look up translate image
See Digital Recording.ACTING AREA The portion of the stage proper, excluding the forestage, viewed by the audience during a given scene.
ADDITIVE COLOUR MIXING  look up translate image
See Colour Mixing.
ADVANCE BAR  look up translate image
Lighting bar positioned just downstage of the proscenium arch.
AERIAL  look up translate image
Cable or rod used to send and receive radio signals (connected to transmitter and receiver or tuner).
AERO  look up translate image
A type of high intensity Par lamp that derives its name from its use as an aircraft landing lamp. The true Aero is 28V and 250W, although there are many variations. The lamp has a very tight beam.
AETTI  look up translate image
Arts & Entertainment Technical Training Initiative (UK).
AGC  look up translate image
Automatic Gain Control. Circuitry within recording equipment which compensates for differences in volume in the incoming sound signal by adjusting the gain automatically. Helps to reduce wild swings in volume.
AISLE  look up translate image
A passage through seating.
AMP  look up translate image
Abbreviation for ;1) AMPERE, the standard unit for measurement of electrical current passing through a circuit. Cables, fuses and switches are designated by their current carrying capacity. Square pin plugs are rated at 13 Amps maximum and Round pin plugs at either 5 Amps or 15 Amps maximum, depending on the size of the pins. If a cable rated at 5 Amps is used with a load of 15 Amps, the cable will overheat and possibly catch fire. 2) AMPLIFIER - sound equipment that converts the low voltage, low...(more)
AMPLITUDE  look up translate image
The strength of a vibrating wave ; in sound, the loudness of the sound.
ANALOGUE SIGNAL (SEE DIGITAL)  look up translate image
A continuously variable signal that can have any value over a given range. For example, an analogue voltage within the range 0 to 10 Volts can have values of 0, 2, 8.785 or any value between. Most dimmers require an analogue voltage in order to operate (from 0 to -10V or 0 to +10V depending on the manufacturer). Most lighting control desks produce a digital multiplexed output, which is converted by a demux box to an analogue signal for the dimmer. See also Digital dimmer.
ANIMATION DISC  look up translate image
A slotted or perforated metal disc which rotates in front of a lantern to provide "movement" in the light. Most effective when used in front of a profile carrying a gobo.
APRON  look up translate image
Section of the stage floor which projects towards or into the auditorium. In proscenium theatres, the part of the stage in front of the house tabs, or in front of the proscenium arch.
ARC LIGHT  look up translate image
See Discharge lamp.
ARCHITECTURAL LAMP  look up translate image
A type of linear filament lamp with contacts at 90 degrees to the filament which can gives the appearance of a continuous line of light (similar to neon, but dimmable).
ARCLINE (TRADE NAME)  look up translate image
A coloured plastic tube containing a number of small strobe units which, when triggered, flash in sequence down the tube. Many tubes can be connected together.
ARENA  look up translate image
Form of stage where the audience are seated on at least two (normally three, or all four) sides of the whole acting area. See Thrust.
ASM  look up translate image
Assistant Stage Manager.
ATMOSPHERE  look up translate image
The normal background sound at any location.
ATTENUATE  look up translate image
To reduce the intensity of a sound signal.
AUDITORIUM  look up translate image
The part of the theatre accommodating the audience during the performance. Sometimes known as the "house".
AUTOMATIC STOP  look up translate image
Many reel-to-reel tape players for theatrical use have a facility that stops the tape mechanism when a piece of clear leader passes a detector adjacent to the erase head. This can be used to cue the tape up ready to start the next effect.
AUTOMATION  look up translate image
1) Facility available on larger sound mixing desks allowing channel muting or even fader moves to be taken under the control of a computer to ensure accurate and repeatable mixing. 2) Describes the method used instead of stage crew for moving bits of set around shows with a big budget.
AUXILIARY INPUT OR RETURN  look up translate image
A route back into the sound desk for a signal sent to a piece of outboard equipment via an auxiliary send.BACK CURTAIN The two-piece bi-parting rear curtain; part of the cyc set. Also known as a rear curtain or backdrop. BACK LIGHT Light falling on an actor or television talent from behind; used to separate the person from the background. BACKSTAGE Literally, the area beyond the acting area toward the rear wall. Also used to describe all areas related to, but not on, the stage, including...(more)
AUXILIARY OUTPUT OR SEND  look up translate image
An additional output from a sound desk which can be used for foldback or monitoring without tying up the main outputs. Each input channel will have a path to the Aux buss. Also used for feeding a signal to an effects processor. See Auxiliary Return.
BACK CLOTH  look up translate image
See Cloth.
BACK PROJECTION  look up translate image
See Projection.
BACK-UP  look up translate image
A section of a lighting control board (sometimes a separate unit) which provides an alternative method of control should the main board fail.
BACKFLAP  look up translate image
Hinge frequently used in Scenic Construction.
BACKING  look up translate image
1) Scenic piece as a backing behind an opening in the set (window etc.) which hides the technical areas beyond. 2) The money invested in a commercial production (by a Backer).
BACKLIGHT  look up translate image
Light coming from upstage, behind scenery or actors, to sculpt and separate them from the background
BACKSTAGE  look up translate image
The part of the stage and theatre which is out of the sight of the audience. The service areas of the theatre.
BAFFLE  look up translate image
1) A sheet of material used to prevent a spill of light in a lantern or in part of a set. 2) A panel in a loudspeaker cabinet designed to reduce back interference noise by isolating the front and rear of the loudspeaker diaphragm. 3) What most of this jargon will do to any non-technical theatrical type.
BAKELITE  look up translate image
(Trade Name) : Hard insulating plastic-like material used in making electrical accessories (e.g. plugtops, lampholders etc.)
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Stage, theatre, studio terms
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Created by admin
Created on 2011-05-16 09:29:53
Number of terms 753
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  • Glossary of Stage and Studio Terms
  • Theatrecrafts - Entertainment Technology Resources - Glossary of Technical Theatre Terms
    Glossary of Technical Theatre Terms, based in the UK. Over 1600 terms defined, and more added regularly.