Broadway Theatre Fans: communities of narrators and translators

Caroline Heim


This article explores the history of Broadway theatre fans from the beginning of the nineteenth century until the first decades of the twenty-first century. Twenty-first century Broadway theatre fan communities share similar practices with their nineteenth and early twentieth century predecessors the b’hoys and the matinee girls.  Theatre fans form vital audience communities that contribute much to the theatrical event. Much has been written about media fans, yet there is a dearth of research into the vibrant theatre fan audience communities that abound on Broadway. In this article, Broadway theatre fans emerge as communities of narrators and translators who appropriate the stories onstage and stake their ownership of stars and productions.

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Popular Entertainment Studies ISSN 1837-9303