I found this guide for teachers on the Trinity Repertory Company Web site. It seems like a good way to start a discussion on proper behavior and what makes going to the theatre unique. (And some adults could use this lesson, too.)
- Speaking to your students about theatre etiquette is ESSENTIAL. Students should be aware this is a LIVE performance and that they should not talk during the show.
- If you do nothing else to prepare your students to see the play, please take some time to talk to them about theatre etiquette in an effort to help the students better appreciate their experience. It will enhance their enjoyment of the show and allow other audience members to enjoy the experience.
- What is the role of the audience in a live performance? How does it differ from attending a movie?
- Why can’t you chew gum or eat at a live theater performance? Why can’t you talk?
- What can happen in live theatre that cannot happen in cinema?
- Reiterate that students may not chew gum, eat, or talk during the performance. Please make sure all cell phones and pagers are turned off. Recording devices and cameras are strictly prohibited.
- If there is a disturbance, the parties involved will be asked to leave and the class will not be invited back to the theatre. Students will not be able to leave the theatre during intermission unless accompanied by an adult.