Definition of backstage in English:



  • 1In or to the area behind the stage in a theatre, especially the wings or dressing rooms.

    ‘I went backstage after the show’
    • ‘We used a photograph of him taken backstage at the Winter Garden theater to calibrate our time extractor.’
    • ‘We walked back to our dressing room backstage, and I reached forward to Tom, and squeezed his shoulder.’
    • ‘Danny stepped away, and cast one last disdainful look at Scott before going backstage, and presumably leaving the theater.’
    • ‘I had to maneuver my way backstage, through the dressing room, and out the door without making noise and or killing myself.’
    • ‘I was quite artistic and I studied an arts foundation course at Bradford College and later worked at the Alhambra Theatre backstage, in the box office and on the stage door.’
    • ‘Also huge for some people, what goes on behind the scenes with all those supermodels at the fashion show backstage?’
    • ‘It's 30 minutes before show time and it's dark and surprisingly quiet backstage at the Gateway Theatre.’
    • ‘I first saw Philip from the wings backstage, he was directing a rehearsal, making some point with the actors.’
    • ‘There's a reason why some theaters have a green-painted lounge backstage.’
    • ‘A special welcome awaits those with an interest in drama either on stage or backstage.’
    • ‘For my part, I left the scene as intended, only to find myself not backstage but in another theatre and invited to keep performing.’
    • ‘I was light-headed, and it was with difficulty that I followed her when she went backstage to her dressing room.’
    • ‘Anyone with an interest in the world of drama, whether on stage or backstage, is encouraged to come along to the meeting and get involved in the activities of the group.’
    • ‘He told the jury that once the £1m cheque had been handed to the soldier, he and his wife were taken backstage to their dressing room.’
    • ‘I stood nervously in the wings, backstage, watching the present act on stage.’
    • ‘She herself has worked backstage for a marionette theater in Minneapolis, and she taught calligraphy for years.’
    • ‘As we are led backstage, we see dressing rooms that might be private cabins.’
    • ‘Then, by coincidence, I met him backstage at a theatre premiere and I didn't recognize him.’
    • ‘Janet found the stage door and wandered backstage.’
    • ‘He put me halfway down once we'd gotten backstage in the small dressing room the guys had been given.’
    unobtrusive, unnoticeable, unremarkable, unspectacular, unostentatious, unimposing, undistinguished, unexceptional, modest, unassuming, discreet, hidden, concealed
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    1. 1.1 In secret.
      ‘we planned our strategies backstage’
      • ‘I should be on the front lines, not making deals backstage.’
      • ‘I wonder who is cutting the deals backstage and what it will look like after this is over.’
      confidential, strictly confidential, secret, top secret, classified, unofficial, off the record, not for publication, not to be made public, not to be disclosed, closet
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  • 1Relating to or situated in the area behind the stage in a theatre.

    ‘a backstage tour of the opera house’
    • ‘Hailey walked over to Theo and Penny, who had tucked themselves into the right wing backstage area.’
    • ‘John shouted running through the backstage dressing room.’
    • ‘Masonry was sent crashing onto the backstage area of the theatre prior to last night's show and bosses decided it would be unsafe for the actors to go on and the show was cancelled.’
    • ‘In the exclusive backstage area, superstars and statesmen were falling over each other.’
    • ‘Our search led us deep into the backstage area of the opera house.’
    • ‘It's worth enquiring about backstage tours of both the Royal Shakespeare and Swan theatres.’
    • ‘She was pacing around the wing of the backstage area that she, Logan, and I inhabited before we went on to do our respective parts.’
    • ‘The Theatre Royal will be offering tea and backstage tours during the week - and concessions for International Older People's Day, on October 1.’
    • ‘She patted me on the back in encouragement, and I ran off to the backstage wings.’
    • ‘I left the office about 5pm and spent a lot of time wandering around the different backstage sites, dressing rooms and stage areas, to make sure everything went to plan.’
    • ‘I could have wished there had been more of the legendary theatrical backstage stories.’
    • ‘I hung my head as I entered the backstage dressing room with the guys and got ready to go meet the fans.’
    • ‘This emotion was one I had never been able to handle, and I slunk away from the bright lights and the stage, to the backstage area.’
    • ‘Yesterday's thoughts on American gun culture reminded me of something that happened when this middle England muser was a backstage myrmidon at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.’
    • ‘That summer I got myself a job working in a theatre doing the backstage work.’
    • ‘The arguments against the theatre revolve around its backstage facilities and relatively small capacity.’
    • ‘She was given a backstage tour, had her picture taken on stage, received signed merchandise from the band and had her seats upgraded to a suite at the side of the stage.’
    • ‘Although there was a space set up as a stage at the front of the audience, complete with a backdrop and a backstage area, it was just as normal for a character to enter from the back of the audience rather than from behind the backdrop.’
    • ‘Operationally, the obvious place to build the extension would have been at the north end of the site, where the existing stage and backstage areas are located.’
    • ‘They ran into Marcus, who'd disappeared as soon as he came off stage, in the fenced in area by the backstage door.’
    1. 1.1 Kept from public scrutiny; secret.
      ‘backstage deals’
      • ‘This in turn would certainly lead to some strange backstage deals.’
      • ‘But beyond the public turmoil lies a private, backstage world of unrequited love, secret affairs and insecurity.’
      • ‘This exhibit is an exploration of the more private, backstage aspect of the shows.’
      • ‘It said 20 of the 34 projects did not strictly implement bid invitations and some were suspected of backstage deals or business bribery, which had affected the projects' quality.’
      • ‘Sometimes, moreover, the backstage discussions that occur in public bathrooms are at least partially concerned with a team member's morale or that of the entire team.’


  • The area in a theatre out of view of the audience, especially in the wings or dressing rooms.

    ‘backstage was the scene of pleasant pandemonium’
    • ‘For them, a screen would divide the visible stage from an invisible backstage where scenes would be changed.’
    • ‘Or i could even stalk them, try to get in the backstages, get to see Ryan and give it to him in person.’
    • ‘Behind him, the stage, backstage and floor were all teeming with activity in preparation for tonight's concert.’
    • ‘Taped to the one just above my head was an arrow drawn on a sheet of notebook paper, pointing over my head to the backstage on stage right.’
    • ‘As in any museum or theater experience, there is a public arena and a backstage.’
    • ‘Directly to the north of Gehry's pavilion, with which it shares a backstage, is the Harris Theater of Music and Dance.’
    • ‘(The artist in question says:) ‘We've seen plenty of backstages but that happening party scene has eluded us thus far.’’
    • ‘Bar, foyer and backstage are all much improved but the red-plush auditorium retains its intimate charm.’
    • ‘Now once they make their choices, they could call the bands forward from the wings of backstage.’
    • ‘There are backstages now, there's security, there's bodyguards.’
    • ‘Today, we walked up to the Crosby Theater and saw the backstage, where the sets and small boat for the show, set to open this Saturday, were stored.’
    • ‘The idea is to expand the hall's stage area and backstage as well as building a new entrance hall.’
    • ‘Peter's mother, Peg, worked for Ma most of her life, acquiring in the grimy backstages of the provinces an ambition for stardom, which, when it was frustrated, she focused on her son.’
    • ‘Almost every great player has a solid team working backstages to produce the best results possible.’