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How To Conduct Yourself Backstage

Whether you're an actor, a writer, or part of the crew, make sure you'll be around for the next production by following proper backstage etiquette.


  • TIP: Don't bring friends or family backstage where actors are frequently undressing.
  • Step 1: Acknowledge the stage manager or whoever is running the show. If they yell out "Five minutes," to indicate the time left in a break, call back "Thank you, five," to let them know they were heard and understood.
  • Step 2: Keep the backstage area free of trash and return it to the state you found it in when you arrived. Hang up costumes and return props to their place on the prop table.
  • FACT: The Phantom of the Opera was the longest-running Broadway play as of 2009, with over 8,850 performances.
  • Step 3: Avoid giving notes during the show. Criticism has its time and place – after the show.
  • Step 4: Don't have any unnecessary conversations. Turn off your mic if you're not performing. The focus should be what's happening onstage.
  • TIP: Don't touch or move other people's props.
  • Step 5: Find a spot to sit and store your belongings. Stay quietly in your spot until your entrance. Avoid watching the show from the wings and blocking exits and entrances.
  • Step 6: Drink only bottled water to guard against accidental spills and stains.
  • Step 7: Check that all your costumes and props are present, in their proper places, and ready to go.

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