Cat’s-Eye View of “Front of House”
July 23, 2013
I’m Sir, and I welcome everyone when they arrive at the front of the house. Mmmmrow? Hmm? You say I’m not a house cat, I’m a THEATRE cat, so why am I talking about houses?
Let me tell you…
Theatre people use the word “house” differently than other people. (So do theatre cats.) In a theatre, “house” can mean two things.
It can be the part of the building where you find the box office (where tickets are sold), the lobby, the coat check (cats prefer to keep their coats with them at all times), even the part where the audience sits — the auditorium. Here’s a good description of the kind of work people do in front-of-house jobs that I found when I was prowling around online. It’s from a website called Get Into Theatre. I’m going to put a link to that website in … Mmmmrow? Writer purrson? You need to make a place for links!
Excuse me while I lick my paws. That got my fur all ruffled, realizing we didn’t have a place for links yet.
Now, prrrrrow, the other meaning for “house” in the theatre is “all the people in the audience.” An actor might ask the front-of-house manager, “how is the house tonight?” to find out how many people are there. If there are no seats left, not even for one more person (or for a cat who likes to curl up on that nice red plush), they say it’s a full house. They might even say, “the house is a bit boisterous tonight,” meaning that they’re loud and bouncy. (Being boisterous when you’re in the theatre isn’t good theatre manners. Kittens find it hard to sit still, but they learn!)
So, if you’re in a theatre, and someone mentions the house, now you know what they’re talking about. Too bad not every theatre has a tuxedo cat like me working the front of the house!
Next time we give you a cat’s-eye view of something in the theatre, Lady will take you backstage. See you then!