Theatre Lore: A Dictionary of Backstage Language, Expressions and Useful Stage Knowledge for those Theatrically Bent or of a Curious Nature is a new book written by Nick Bromley, a Company Stage Manager who has worked on over fifty plays and musicals in his incredibly successful career. Being a trained Stage Manager myself, I have been eagerly awaiting the release of this publication.
The title spells out the book’s target market which is essentially a very broad one. Such books are generally very niche but this one will most definitely appeal to a wider audience. I have colleagues and friends in the entertainment industry, from actors to technicians and even just those who love going to the theatre, who have picked up a copy of Bromley’s book; hence highlighting its universal draw.
The introductory section expresses that the book should not be used for educational purposes and that is certainly correct. What Bromley does do, however, is to draw on his own professional experiences and witty nature, and create them into a very entertaining read. It is not the kind of book that will necessarily be read in large chunks but it is great to be able to pick it up and put it down at leisure.
Simon Bond’s illustrations alongside Bromley’s text are a welcome addition. They compliment the writing very well and add extra charm. American artist Bond has also had great success and has provided cartoons and illustrations for more than twenty books, including the international bestseller, 101 Uses of a Dead Cat in 1981.
Following this triumph, I would love to hear more of Bromley’s experiences on paper in a more autobiographical format. He evidently has so many stories to relay from his illustrious career and I personally would be very interested to hear about them. As for the other people who will read this offering, I’ve no doubt they will too.
Theatre Lore is informative, honest, sometimes brutal but very funny. For anyone working in or interested in theatre, a copy should be on your shelves.
Theatre Lore is available on Amazon, Abe Books and the LNP website. It is also on sale at The National Theatre Bookshop, Foyles and Samuel French.