Theatre Superstitions

Today is of course Friday 13th, traditionally a day of bad luck in many Western cultures. What better day then to blog about theatrical superstitions.

Over the centuries, the craft of acting and the theatre have developed many superstitions, from the well known to the obscure.

Did you know many people believe…

  • it is bad luck to wish an actor “good luck”
  • a theatre’s ghost/s perform their own play on Monday nights
  • many theatres leave a light on stage for the ghost/s to perform
  • it is bad luck to mention the title or lines from Macbeth before a show
  • whistling on stage is bad luck
  • dramas involving peacock feathers bring bad luck
  • there is superstition about using real money in a stage performance
  • having three lit candles on stage brings bad luck
  • wearing green on stage is unlucky
  • flowers given to a leading lady after the final performance should be from a graveyard
  • it is bad luck to have mirrors on stage
  • it is bad luck to speak the play’s last line before opening night
  • real flowers used on stage is bad luck
  • a performer should never clean their make-up box
  • opening a show on a Friday night brings bad luck
  • a bad dress rehearsal means a good opening night

If you would like to read more about these theatrical superstitions and the reasoning behind them, check out the websites below.

Theatrical Superstitions: Steppenwolf Theatre

Listverse: Top 10 Theatre Superstitions

Wikipedia: Theatrical Superstitions

Louis E Catron: Theatrical Superstitions and Saints

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