DISNEY REDONE: Lily James as Cinderella.
DISNEY REDONE: Lily James as Cinderella. Contributed

What you never knew about theatre

THE Moncrieff Entertainment Centre (MEC) is known as a proscenium arch theatre, being the more traditional style (a picture frame stage), with an arch or opening separating the stage from the auditorium.

The proscenium, which was often extremely decorative in the manner of a triumphal arch, framed the prospective production.

The stage curtains conceal the sides of the stage, which are known as the wings.

Several rows of short curtains across the top of the stage, called teasers, hide the backdrops, which in turn are hidden above the stage in the fly system until ready for use.

Who works in theatre?

The number and range of people who work in a theatre depends upon its size and type.

Theatres can generally be divided into two types: a producing theatre or a presenting theatre, but some do both.

The MEC can do both but is mostly a presenting theatre, hosting visiting companies whose productions have been developed elsewhere.

Both will have a core body of specialist staff, some with operational roles; others directly involved in presenting a show.

The theatre manager manages the theatre, ensuring everyone is focused on putting on a program of events, attracting and looking after audiences, and making the theatre a financial and artistic success.

This person oversees the planning of the theatre's programs, staff and the building itself.

They report to the theatre's owners, in this case the Bundaberg Regional Council.

Stage management team

A team of stage managers directs the performances of each show and the number of stage managers (SM) required depends upon the size of the production. The SM has overall responsibility for the stage before, during and after the performance.

Technical staff

This team manages all technical aspects of a show, including the safe and effective use of equipment. Technical staff include lighting and sound operators and crew responsible for special effects such as smoke and pyrotechnics.

Some work during the night when setting up performances.

They operate the scenery from high ramped walkways above the stage called fly floors. The scenery is "flown" in using a counterweight or power-flying system, but when labour was cheap, it was operated manually by teams of men using ropes made of hemp. These were known as "hemp houses". Some older theatres still are "hemp houses" or have a mixture of hemp, counterweights and power-flying.

Box office staff

They sell tickets, either over the counter, phone or the internet, working during the day and early evening.

Some larger theatres sell their tickets through an external agency, which operates longer hours.

The box office staff, ushers and candy bar operators are the public face of the theatre, and meet and greet the audience, and provide information about the facility, the program and look after the health and safety of the patrons.

Publicity and promotions

A marketing person's role is to promote and sell tickets.

To do so, they manage all aspects of the theatre's publicity and advertising material, which includes, fliers, posters, press adverts, brochures, newsletters, email direct marketing and websites.

They oversee their content, design and production and arrange distribution of all printed material.

Movies starting on Thursday, June 25

Cinderella (PG)

Cate Blanchett stars in this new vision of the Cinderella tale from director Kenneth Branagh for Disney Pictures.

Interestingly the genre is science fiction and fantasy romance.

The cast also includes Richard Madden, Lily James and Helena Bonham Carter as the Fairy Godmother.

This movie is magic.

Tomorrowland (PG)

Starring Academy Award winner George Clooney. Bound by a shared destiny, former boy-genius Frank (Clooney), jaded by disillusionment, and Casey (Britt Robertson), a bright, optimistic teen bursting with scientific curiosity, embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space known only as "Tomorrowland".

Visually stunning.