Stage set vs scenery

Simo Ita

Senior Member
Italian
Hi there,

Do these two words mean the same thing in English?

I could bring some paint brushes to paint the stage set / scenery.

Thanks in advance.
 
  • elroy

    Moderator: EHL, Arabic, Hebrew, German(-Spanish)
    US English, Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    Hmmmm… what exactly are you painting?

    (“paintbrushes” is one word.)
     

    Simo Ita

    Senior Member
    Italian
    Hmmmm… what exactly are you painting?

    (“paintbrushes” is one word.)

    Thanks for your reply elroy!

    I think that paintbrush can be written both as a single word and as two separate words. Are you suggesting that it's more common to write it as a single word?

    Anyway, what I'm trying to express is that I could paint the different panels that make up the "setting".

    I hope that it's clearer.

    P.S. Can you please explain what the two words mean anyway?
     

    elroy

    Moderator: EHL, Arabic, Hebrew, German(-Spanish)
    US English, Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    I've only ever seen it written as one word in American English. It looks odd to me as two words.

    Anyway, what I'm trying to express is that I could paint the different panels that make up the "setting".
    Hmmm... there's the backdrop, but that's usually just one cloth, not multiple "panels."

    stage set = backdrop + props

    scenery = what the backdrop and/or props depict

    Here are the American Association of Community Theatre's definitions of these terms:

    backdrop: A large curtain, usually painted to represent the sky, a landscape, or some other background, dropped upstage to form the back of a wing set and to mask the backstage space; now commonly supplanted by a cyclorama.

    (stage) set: The complete stage setting for a scene or act, usually referring to the combination of flats, platforms, doors, windows, furniture and accessories.

    scenery: The elements of a stage setting, especially those made of wood and canvas, or any other material used to construct platforms, flats, walls, doors and backdrops.

    Theatre Terms | AACT
     

    Simo Ita

    Senior Member
    Italian
    I've only ever seen it written as one word in American English. It looks odd to me as two words.


    Hmmm... there's the backdrop, but that's usually just one cloth, not multiple "panels."

    stage set = backdrop + props

    scenery = what the backdrop and/or props depict

    Here are the American Association of Community Theatre's definitions of these terms:

    backdrop: A large curtain, usually painted to represent the sky, a landscape, or some other background, dropped upstage to form the back of a wing set and to mask the backstage space; now commonly supplanted by a cyclorama.

    (stage) set: The complete stage setting for a scene or act, usually referring to the combination of flats, platforms, doors, windows, furniture and accessories.

    scenery: The elements of a stage setting, especially those made of wood and canvas, or any other material used to construct platforms, flats, walls, doors and backdrops.

    Theatre Terms | AACT

    Thanks a lot elroy!
     

    Keith Bradford

    Senior Member
    English (Midlands UK)
    Hmmm... there's the backdrop, but that's usually just one cloth, not multiple "panels."

    stage set = backdrop + props

    scenery = what the backdrop and/or props depict

    ...

    Theatre Terms | AACT
    The set is more than the backdrop.
    • The backdrop/cyclorama is the curtain, often painted with distant landscape or sky, which hangs upstage.
    • The scenery consists of either drops (= curtains) further downstage or rigid built pieces such as flats, what you called in #3 the different panels that make up the "setting".
    • Flats were typically cloth stretched over a wooden frame, like an artist's canvas, to represent interior or exterior walls. Today they are frequently covered with hardboard (= MDF) or plastic materials. I have used expanded polystyrene.
    • There are other elements of scenery such as groundrows (low flats representing bushes or low walls) cutouts (flats with holes in them) etc. and of course all the varieties of steps and platforms.
     
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