Cowboy Mouth performing in 2007.

A performance, in the performing arts, generally comprises an event in which a performer or group of performers present one or more works of art to an audience. Usually the performers participate in rehearsals beforehand. Afterwards audience members often applaud. After a performance, performance measurement sometimes occurs. Performance measurement is the process of collecting, analyzing and/or reporting information regarding the performance of an individual, group, organization, system or component.

The means of expressing appreciation can vary by culture. Chinese performers will clap with the audience at the end of a performance; the return applause signals "thank you" to the audience.[1] In Japan, folk performing-arts performances commonly attract individuals who take photographs, sometimes getting up to the stage and within inches of performer's faces.[2]

Sometimes the dividing line between performer and the audience may become blurred, as in the example of "participatory theatre" where audience members get involved in the production.

Theatrical performances can take place daily or at some other regular interval. Performances can take place at designated performance spaces (such as a theatre or concert hall), or in a non-conventional space, such as a subway station, on the street, or in somebody's home.


  • Performance genres 1
    • Dance 1.1
    • Music and music theatre 1.2
    • Theatre 1.3
    • Other genres 1.4
  • Live performance event 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • Sources and further reading 5
  • Bibliography 6

Performance genres

Examples of performance genres include:


Music and music theatre


Other genres

Music performance (a concert or a recital) may take place indoors in a concert hall or outdoors in a field, and may require the audience to remain very quiet, or encourage them to sing and dance along with the music.

A performance may also describe the way in which an actor performs. In a solo capacity, it may also refer to a mime artist, comedian, conjurer, or other entertainer.

Live performance event

Live event support.

Live performance events including theater, music, dance, opera, use sound production equipment and services like: staging, scenery, mechanicals, sound, lighting, video, special effects, transport, packaging, communications, costume and makeup to convince live audience members that there is no better place that they could be right now. This Live Event Support article provides information about many of the possible performance production support tools and services and how they relate to each other. Live performance events have a long history of using visual scenery, lighting, costume amplification and a shorter history of visual projection and sound amplification reinforcement. This article describes the technologies that have been used to amplify and reinforce Live events. The sections of this article together explain how the tools needed to stage, amplify and reinforce live events are interconnected.

See also


  1. ^ Brown, Ju; Brown, John (2006). China, Japan, Korea Culture and Customs. North Charleston: BookSurge. p. 55.  
  2. ^ Thornbury, B. (1997). The Folk Performing Arts: Traditional Culture in Contemporary Japan. Albany: State University of New York. p. 12.  

Sources and further reading

  • "Projected Scenery Effects" in Burris-Meyer and Cole, Scenery For The Theatre (Little, Brown and Co. 1938, pp. 246-7).
  • Wilfred, T., Projected Scenery: A Technical Manual (1965).


  • Espartaco Carlos, Eduardo Sanguinetti: The Experience of Limits,(Ediciones de Arte Gaglianone, first published 1989) ISBN 950-9004-98-7.
  • Philip V. Bohlman, Marcello Sorce Keller, and Loris Azzaroni (eds.), Musical Anthropology of the Mediterranean: Interpretation, Performance, Identity, Bologna, Edizioni Clueb – Cooperativa Libraria Universitaria Editrice, 2009.
  • Platz, F. and Kopiez, R., "When the first impression counts: Music performers, audience, and the evaluation of stage entrance behavior", Musicae Scientiae 17, No. 2 (2013), pp. 167-197 (doi:10.1177/1029864913486369).