But theatre is also a public event, a spectacle or a show, attempting to please or amaze the audience by a display of exceptional stage achievements, that is, special performances. In that sense, like sporting events or the circus, theatre serves what I shall call the performance function: it satisfies our natural desire to achieve or witness something extraordinary.
– Jean Alter
Of course we all come to the theatre with baggage. The baggage of our daily lives, the baggage of our problems, the baggage of our tragedies, the baggage of being tired. It doesn’t matter what age you are. But if our hearts get opened and released – well that is what theatre can do, and does sometimes, and everyone is thankful when that happens.
– Vanessa Redgrave
Acting is a sport. On stage you must be ready to move like a tennis player on his toes. Your concentration must be keen, your reflexes sharp; your body and mind are in top gear, the chase is on. Acting is energy. In the theatre people pay to see energy.
– Clive Swift
Once you do a piece on the stage, you become that poem or you become that piece. That’s really who you are. I think that’s why some artists have stage names, you know- I don’t have a stage name, it’s pretty much just me.
– Clinton D. Powell
The theater, which is in no thing, but makes use of everything – gestures, sounds, words, screams, light, darkness – rediscovers itself at precisely the point where the mind requires a language to express its manifestations. To break through language in order to touch life is to create or recreate the theatre.
– Antonin Artaud
Theatre is a concentrate of life as normal. Theatre is a purified version of real life, an extraction, an essence of human behaviour that is stranger and more tragic and more perfect than everything that is ordinary about me and you.
– Eleanor Catton
The most effective moments in the theatre are those that appeal to basic and commonplace emotions-love of woman, love of home, love of country, love of right, anger, jealousy, revenge, ambition, lust, and treachery.
– Clayton Hamilton
The theater is a humble materialist enterprise which seeks to produce riches of the imagination, not the other way around. The theater is an event, not an object. Theatre workers need not blush and conceal their desperate struggle to pay the landlords their rents. Theater without the stink of art.
– Charles Ludlam