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Cabaret/Broadway Definitions

The following is a glossary of Cabaret/Broadway words and phrases that have been translated into standard musician language:

  • 5,6,7,8: really means: "1,2,3,4"
  • Associate conductor: Non-blues-playin' rehearsal pianist who probably sleeps with the musical director
  • Backphrasing: means: someone will be singing out of time.
  • Broadway star: High strung, self-involved, over-paid, singer-dancer type who loves Judy Garland and Bob Fosse.
  • Bus and truck: a bunch of people willing to play anywhere for lousy money.
  • Choreographer: Person who sleeps with the musical director, producer, director, and some members of the cast. (also arranges dance routines)
  • Chorus: aggregation of singer-dancer types who would love to be Broadway stars.
  • Dance captain: military term used for a cat that yells: 5,6,7,8" at the chorus.
  • English show: term used to identify an extremely pretentious broadway musical written by a very lucky British guy.
  • Fabulous: means: this shit sounds real good.
  • Half hour: means: you have 30 minutes to get high before the gig starts.
  • House manager: out of work actor or actress that tells the maintenance man when to turn on the air conditioner in the theater.
  • I need it bigger: means: play it loud and with no taste.
  • Jazz 4 feeling: really means: bass walks in four but drums remain in two.
  • Latin feel: means: play a lot of percussion instruments with no groove.
  • Lighting designer: blind Cro-Magnon who owns at least two light bulbs.
  • More European: means: hire an accordian player.
  • Musical contractor: man who owns a musical instrument and calls the show "his".
  • Musical director: Non-blues-playin' rehearsal pianist who probably sleeps with one of the producers.
  • Pull back: means: drag.
  • Push it: really means: rush.
  • Show jacket: cheap embarrassing outerwear identifying you as one that just loves the theater.
  • Sound designer: deaf Neanderthal who owns at least two microphones.
  • Stage manager: uptight control freak that wears a Janet Jackson-type headset.
  • We're a hit: means: a lot of gay people really like the show.