Theatrical society, rather than the theatre
, has made the lives of actors as we see them in these volumes, in many cases so tragic, even sordidly tragic.
Then, without premeditation, we may express our disapproval of such a turn by getting up from our seats and leaving the theatre
for a promenade and a breath of fresh air outside, coming back, when the turn is over, to enjoy the rest of the programme.
His besetting sin gained so fast upon him, however, that it was found impossible to employ him in the situations in which he really was useful to the theatre. The public-house had a fascination for him which he could not resist.
'A few nights afterwards, a boy put a dirty scrap of paper in my hand, on which were scrawled a few words in pencil, intimating that the man was dangerously ill, and begging me, after the performance, to see him at his lodgings in some street--I forget the name of it now--at no great distance from the theatre. I promised to comply, as soon as I could get away; and after the curtain fell, sallied forth on my melancholy errand.
Presently he hailed a tall, bearded man, grim-browed and rather battered-looking, who had his opera cloak on his arm and his hat in his hand, and who seemed to be on the point of leaving the theatre
'Miss So-and-so, of the Theatre
Royal, Drury Lane?'
I went first to the barrier separating us from the stalls, and looked for the Count in that part of the theatre
. He was not there.
"I was thinking of that too--I was going to leave the theatre
in order to take the picture away with me," he said.
This thought hath been carried so far, and is become so general, that some words proper to the theatre
, and which were at first metaphorically applied to the world, are now indiscriminately and literally spoken of both; thus stage and scene are by common use grown as familiar to us, when we speak of life in general, as when we confine ourselves to dramatic performances: and when transactions behind the curtain are mentioned, St James's is more likely to occur to our thoughts than Drury-lane.
Happily for him, a love of the theatre
is so general, an itch for acting so strong among young people, that he could hardly out-talk the interest of his hearers.
And what chance would I have in the theatre
"There is an axe in the theatre
," continued Poole; "and you might take the kitchen poker for yourself."