Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Challenge : T is for Theater

T is for Theater.

For those who have followed my posts, whether here or on Facebook or on Twitter, you know that Theater is an important part of my life. I've been involved with theater since I was a little kid. So when it got to T and I started thinking about what T-word I wanted to write about, it only took a few seconds.

Theater. Or Theatre.

I originally thought I would talk about my love of theater, my involvement in theater - both past and present, and maybe get into a little bit of exploration of different theatrical genres. That could take a very long time, which wouldn't necessarily be bad, but it might be something for another time.

Again I found myself not being able to remember the origin of the differences of TheatRE and TheatER. I've heard different versions. So I decided to do a little web hopping and see what I could find.

The first one which caught my attention was this from over at Community.Write.Com : "Theater is the preferred spelling in American English, and theatre is preferred virtually everywhere else."

My favorite is from the Grammarist, and the first part of this (the venue versus art form explanation) is the one I've heard from some theater peope: "Some Americans do make distinctions—for instance, that a theater is a venue while theatre is an art form, or that a theater is a movie theater while a theatre is a drama venue. There is nothing wrong with making these distinctions, but they are not consistently borne out in general usage."

So I guess that it really doesn't matter which we use. Unless you are and American and don't want to out yourself as such - in which case you could decide to use the "RE" spelling in your written correspondence. I try to follow the lead of the theatrical company with which I'm working when I spell the word.

Theatre is another one of the essentials of life, in my opinion, no matter how you spell it. It falls under the Arts and Creativity, which are crucial. Theatre lets us explore other lives, times, places through the stage - whether we are involved in the production or are in the audience. It lets us see possible outcomes, experience other times or worlds, it lets us try on other personas and see what happens. Sometimes it's an escape, or a release, or a sense of not being alone, something to make us feel better, happy, sad, hopeful, romantic, angry, and more.

T is for Theatre/Theater.



  1. Since my acting days I've always used RE.

    1. :-) Thanks, Rocky. I used to think it was an insider/outsider thing, perhaps - but have discovered many theatre/er people who use the "er" as well. Or maybe - naw, nevermind.

      Thank you for coming by!

  2. Theatre looks so much more correct than theater, which I think of as the one who ate before going to the theatre.

    Take 25 to Hollister
    Don't be a Hippie

    1. Ha! That's a great distinction.

      Thank you for stopping by.