Hi All,

Has anyone else noticed that the phrase, "Break A Leg," is disappearing, or is it just a trend out here in Michigan?


In December, my kids were Angel's in the Nutcracker. You know how some local productions lets parents buy ads in the programs? I bought one and told my girls to "Break A Wing," to be cute.
Every night in the audience, I would hear people in utter disbelief that a Mom would wish that for her kids. 


We have a big dance competition out here this weekend, and every time I say, "Break A Leg," some people look at me like I'm crazy.


WHAT?  Please tell me you all still use this phrase activily and it's just this area.  I know times change, but I will never let the standard phrase go.


Take care ...

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I still use this phrase whenever someone I know is involved in any type of performance, not just theatre.  People who aren't familiar with the performing arts world look at me oddly when I use this phrase, but it still is very much in use where I live...
sounds like you dont have many hard core theater people around you.
I've always said it and I've never heard of anyone who didn't know what it meant.  Maybe it has something to do with living in NYC, but I thought it was common knowledge!


Same around here- I'm surprised no one had heard it before ! That's very odd. I'm not hard-core theatre by any means, but I've always known of this expression and heard it often,  and  I've seen it in those ads you mention....


(  How are you doing, Julie? Were all three kids angels- how cute !  :)  )

I always use it too - any kind of performance for anyone I know, like Lucy. It's kinda surprising to me to hear about someone who doesn't know the meaning of that. Well I guess it's not about having hard core theater people around 'coz I'm used to hear it. It would be fun to explain that people what it means - they might like it or think it's crazy or just laugh at it :)

i guess you must be familiar with performing arts to know it...


in french we say "merde!" which means "s**t", and once i also came across people who didn't know it and i thought it was odd..

We say "merda" in portuguese, which means "s**t" too. I've also seen people thinking it was some kind od offense when I said that to some friends once. It was kinda funny.
Not here -- out the west coast. A local high school was doing "West Side Story" and the Tony broke his nose during the opening night performance, and so now we all joke and tell each other to "break a nose!"

Here is the history of "Break a Leg".  It goes all the back to Shakespeare-times.  If someone did an exceptionally good show, they would have to bow or curtsey, requiring them to bend their knee got it.....break (bend) their leg.  What they are saying is, "I hope your show is so great, you have to take a lot of bows". 


Saying "good luck on your show" has the underpinning of saying "you really have no talent, so the only thing that will make your show be any good is if you get lucky". 

There are numerous alleged sources...   

They said it on the last episode of Glee before the Regional Competition, LOL!
I don't know if you do it in the states, but in Australia the expression 'chookas' is back in fashion. It's origins are from when chicken was really expensive because of lack of refrigeration so 'chookas' meant 'hope you do well enough to be able to afford chicken tonight'.


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