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A Night at the Theatre

This time of year always appears to bring some fabulous theatre productions for us to enjoy locally in Geelong and in Melbourne.

As hosts to such high-brow visitors, it would be only good manners to ensure that our conduct is as impeccable as the performance of the actors themselves, so here are some guidelines as what, and what not to do, in the theatre.

  1. Be in your seat before the curtain rises.
  2. When making your way to the seat, it is polite to face the people seated at a 45 degree angle rather than give them a rear view as you brush past!
  3. Turn off your mobile phone.
  4. If you are bringing lollies or chocolate to the performance then ensure that all wrappers and packaging have been dispensed with in advance and decanted into a zip lock bag. There’s nothing worse than listening to the rustle of someone unwrapping a lolly; even worse if they are doing it slowly as it just increases the agony!
  5. Do try to refrain from talking no matter how quietly you do it. Save it for the interval, or pass a knowing look to your fellow theatre goer instead if you are in admiration of what is taking place on stage.
  6. Pre-order drinks for the interval so that you can emerge from the inevitable queue for the loo and still have time to spare for a drink afterwards.
  7. Avoid the use of perfume.
  8. Don your ‘quiet’ jewelry for the evening rather than sounding like part of the orchestra! Jangling bangles are a distraction to the audience around you and to the actors themselves.
  9. Wear something appropriate to the level of production company performing and to the theatre itself. Either way though, it is ill mannered not to have made some effort in dressing for the occasion.
  10. Unless you are a natural exhibitionist, you would do well to wait and see if a standing ovation is in order. You might feel a little exposed if you appear to be the only one standing and everyone is looking at you rather than the actors at the end of the production.