1. The formal name is Theatrical Properties, but commonly known as props.
There are four different types of props:
These are props that begin the show on stage. These are the business of the Prop Department. They may be carried off the stage. They are part of the action. An example would be a gun placed in a drawer to be used as a murder weapon.
Personal Props or Hand Props:
These are props carried on stage by an actor. They begin the show on the prop table back stage. These are the business of the Prop Department. They may or may not stay on stage. They are part of the action. An example is a bag of money carried on stage to bribe another character.
These are small props that are on stage only to make the space look more realistic. These are the business of the Scenic Department. They begin and end the show on stage. They are not called for in the script. They are not part of the critical action although an actor may briefly interact with them. An example would be a books on a shelf or food in kitchen cupboard.
These are props that are part of the character but not necessarily part of the action. They are the business of the Costume Department to create. They may be called for as part of a character description in the script but not by the action. An example might be a cane, pocket watch, or hat.
2. Things that hold up other things.
3. Short for "propellers."
4. Modern slang for "proper recognition."
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