get the goose
To get the goose signifies to be hissed at while on the stage. The "big bird," the terror of actors, is simply a metaphor for goose in theatrical slang.--John Camden Hotten's Slang Dictionary, 1887
Death of Colley Cibber (1671-1757), innovative English actor, dramatist, and theater manager. The son of a sculptor, he joined the Theatre Royal in Drury Lane at age nineteen and, except for brief interludes, spent his long career with his company in various capacities. Once, while acting in an Italian comedy, he forgot a line that began, "I was then in Rome..." In his awkward moment of need, he turned to the prompter to supply him the rest of his sentence from offstage but was left speechless and deeply embarrassed. Cibber waited as the seconds slowly crept by and then finally disappeared into the wings. He collared the inept dialogue assistant and, hauling him to center stage, shouted furiously, "Hang you, you scoundrel! What was I doing in Rome?"
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