proscenium(redirected from Proschenium arch)
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the forward part of the stage, the part in front of the proscenium arch and closest to the audience.
In Roman theaters the proscenium was a platform located in front of the stage and used as the acting space (pulpitum). The modern proscenium evolved in 16th-century Italy; for example, the Teatro Olimpico in Vicenza had a proscenium 25.72 m wide and 6 m deep. The proscenium in 16th-century England was separated from the stage by a movable curtain or by columns. A spacious proscenium thrusting deeply into the auditorium was a basic feature of British theaters in the 17th and 18th centuries.
There are permanent prosceniums in the Leningrad Young People’s Theater and the Royal Shakespeare Theatre (Stratford-on-Avon).