One area of discussion that crops up from time to time is whether or not to use a backdrop curtain or go without. I think it depends upon what kind of a show your are doing and where the show will be staged. Let me explain …

For years I did not use a backdrop curtain. Whatever was behind me made no difference to me. But as I started refining my shows I found a backdrop curtain was a very useful and professional thing to have and use. I could hide my carrying cases and other props behind it; it gave me a place to use to make an entrance; and gave the school show a polished, professional look. I also could hang a banner from the curtain to name the show or put my name in front of the audience. I think it elevated the overall look of my school shows.

But there are other places where a backdrop curtain would not come in handy. If you do library shows you sometimes are at risk of having very limited space to work. The meeting rooms, if they even have one, are sometimes small and cramped, or you may have to work the show in the actual library itself. Not very practical for a backdrop curtain.

When I worked on a variety show or as the opening act for a big name star I did not use a backdrop curtain. It took too much time to put it up, take it down, and move it. I basically had to work with a stand and my puppet case, which I brought on with me and took away with me. No backdrop curtain here!

At corporate events you may have a platform stage to work, which may or may not accommodate a curtain. Often the banquet room has been professionally decorated, so your curtain would actually take away from the overall look of the event, Here again, it just depends upon what venue you are working and the place that it will be in. I always take my backdrop curtain with me and then after looking over the situation I decide whether or not it dictates using it. Let your good judgement be your guide, as in all things.