A Night at the Theatre

These images consist of tickets and playbills from both amateur and professional productions performed at NC State University and the Durham Performing Arts Center. Theatrical productions have been a significant part of our cultural history and the historical ephemera presented here will help construct a more complete image of the Theatre’s intricate past.

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Creative/Technical Specifications

For the images of the tickets, I wanted to present them at an angle that would accentuate their ephemeral state by simply placing them on a table in a manner that suggested that these tickets were meant to be simply left behind after gaining admittance to the performance. I used a gray backdrop in order to highlight the primarily white and back colors of the tickets so that viewers can easily read what is printed on them. In order to illustrate the playbill covers faithfully, I decided to depict them in a full, frontal angle without a backdrop. This way, viewers can simply appreciate the artistry presented on the playbills without any distractions.

Technical Specifications are in order as the images appear above.


File Size: 2.6 MB; 2.8 MB; 1.3 MB; 647 KB

Image Size: 3264 x 2448; 2448 x 3264; 1851 x 3015; 1602 x 2598

DPI: 72; 72; 72; 72

Color Model: RGB; RGB; RGB; RGB

Historical Description

These images present a small piece of the Theatre’s vast cultural history. The two plays represented in the images illustrate a diverse combination of classic and modern productions that are performed today and an appreciation for older works that is coupled with the progression of modern theatrical productions. Although these images are derived from recent performances, they can serve as a modern comparison for the Theatre’s cultural past. I hope that, over time, these images will gain more historical significance by offering objects of comparison to what the Theatre will hold in its future and help to become a small stepping stone in creating a more complete image of the Theatre’s history. These images will be able to convey information about the artistry behind playbill covers, relative values of ticket prices, and the formatting of the tickets. In addition, I will provide a link below that will include all the pages of the playbills so that viewers can learn about the advertisements included, the people involved in the productions, and information about other productions being performed.


Pedagogical Implications

Using my ephemera as an example, students can learn that almost every object, no matter how seemingly useless or insignificant they may appear to be, can possess historical significance. Students can learn to derive historical significance out of objects that they possess a personal attachment to and in turn, this will enable students to become more engaged in the process of historical inquiry. In acquiring a sense of historical significance of their objects, students can also be encouraged to learn more about the evolving history behind their objects and ponder the implications that their objects may have on future historians. Students can recreate this digitization process by creating similar blog posts with pictures and descriptions of their personal ephemera. If the technology required for the digitization process for each student’s ephemera is limited, students can be grouped among similar interests to procure objects that follow a specific theme. Then, the students can be asked to inquire upon the historical significance of each object and the relationship between the objects within the given theme.








Written by rrhall2

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Written by rrhall2

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