The title role in the performing arts is the performance part that gives the title to the piece, as in Aida, Giselle, Michael Collins or Othello. The actor, singer or dancer who performs that part is also said to have the title role.
The actor playing the title role is not always the lead; the title role may or may not be the protagonist. In the television miniseries Shogun, for example, Toshirō Mifune had the title role, but the lead was played by Richard Chamberlain. In the James Bond film and novel The Man with the Golden Gun, the title character is the primary antagonist. It can be even more complicated when the title role and the lead are in different genders; for example, in the recent revival of August Wilson's Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Whoopi Goldberg had the title role, but the lead was Charles S. Dutton.
Read more about Title Role: Title Character
Famous quotes containing the words title and/or role:
“Down the road, on the right hand, on Bristers Hill, lived Brister Freeman, a handy Negro, slave of Squire Cummings once.... Not long since I read his epitaph in the old Lincoln burying-ground, a little on one side, near the unmarked graves of some British grenadiers who fell in the retreat from Concord,where he is styled Sippio Brister,MScipio Africanus he had some title to be called,a man of color, as if he were discolored.”
—Henry David Thoreau (18171862)
“I wish glib and indiscriminate critics of industrialists had some conception of the problems that have to be met by factory management.... General condemnation of employers is a favorite indoor sport of the uninformed intelligentsia who assume the role of lance- bearers for labor.”
—Mary Barnett Gilson (1877?)