Most theatres have a sound department responsible for all the sound effects and music in a play. A props department needs to work with them when a sound effect has to be integrated into a prop, such as with a working radio or a ringing phone. Other sound effects may need to be performed live, either by the prop itself or through an offstage device. These often become the responsibility of the props department because it goes beyond the sound department’s skill set.

Mechanical Sound Effects

Long before sound effects could be played through speakers, the props department provided all sorts of live sound effects through a variety of interesting devices.

Some sound effects are better performed live. The quality of the sound may not be ...

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