Magic lantern slides of the dramatic genre are defined as having five specific properties: (1) recording and level of coding of their images by using recreation of scenic photographs (‘slice of life’); (2) orientation to the professional lanternist market; (3) a social context of public exhibition; (4) high scenic complexity —slides were designed to be shown with the reading of printed texts supplied by the manufacturer—; and (5) the use of contents of the largest dramatic literary tradition in any of their forms: tragedy, comedy, tragicomedy, melodrama, farce, didactic works, or realistic pieces.
The celebrated Life Model slide sequences are a good example of dramatic magic lantern slides: a collection of slides that were marketed from 1870 in England by the firm Bamforth & Co., or in the United States by the New York firm Scott & Van Altena. Life Models collections were composed of up to fifty photographs, sometimes hand-colored, showing extras in elaborate sets and staging all kinds of cultural contents; they were staged accompanied with texts to be read aloud, and, occasionally, they even had songs and / or musical accompaniment.

+ Read more - Close