In Theater (or ” Theatre ” if you prefer), right after the first theater producer stood on a box to shout, “Come see our new play! Drama! Comedy! Romance! and Bloodshed!” the first scenic painter sketched up a sign. Which the first theater carpenter glued on a wall. (Someone else’s wall.)
Thus the first theater poster was invented!
And as soon as none of these folks were looking, an audience member stole it off the wall as a souvenir.
Stage posters – decor for the theater lover.
Or the opera or dance lover. (Lots of good opera posters.) And even – not so very different – there are posters for the film lover.
History of Theater Poster Designers
Henri Toulouse-Lautrec is only one of the Belle Epoque artists famous for theatrical or show posters. Some of his have become iconic – the one shown on the right is less well known.
Alphonse Marie Mucha is another very famous poster designer who created many theater posters like the one below, featuring the “divine” Sarah Bernhardt.
Alphonse Marie Mucha designing a poster for the Divine Sarah on stage.
Starting with Sarah Bernhardt, other female stars were immortalized by posters (and made popular and SOLD TICKETS). Some of the most beautiful posters ever. Yvette Guibert, Eugenie Buffet, Camille Stefani, Jane Avril, La Goulue, and Loie Fuller were some of the actresses who graced the theater posters of the day.