Posted by Jay94 2012-05-06 08:21:59
Have you ever seen anything go wrong on stage? Actors forgetting lines, falling over, being sick, fainting? Sets failing? Alarms?
Try not to cite just previews
Posted by Huss417 2012-05-06 08:28:35
The first one that comes to mind was at The Red Shoes. I can't even tell you what actor it was but they had a flying harness and next thing the lights went out you heard a thud and the harness was banging into the scenery with no one attached. Lights came back up and it was the curtain call.
hate to say that is the only thing I even remember of the show.
Posted by ChildrenwillListen 2012-05-06 10:24:19
I've never actually seen anything go wrong onstage thankfully but that's because I won't go see Spiderman. However here at school the night before Anything Goes opened, our Billy Crocker got a concussion because they pushed the bed out too soon before the door opened. It was a really bad one. But he still insisted on performing and he did. And he was excellent too.
Of course there is also the infamous story of Idina Menzel's trap door incident.
Posted by Dollypop 2012-05-06 10:52:24
I was in a production of NO, NO NANETTE when the set fell ontop of us during "I Want To Be Happy" and later in that same performance, Nanette's skirt fell off during "Tea For Two".
Posted by Vagabond Anarchist 2012-05-06 11:33:20
I was at The Little Mermaid when this happened:
So crazy. A few minutes before the show we heard a loud crash behind the curtain, and the show was delayed over half an hour. Audience members weren't told anything as to what had happened - it all came out after, in the news etc.
Turns out actor Adrian Bailey had fallen on the large ship set through a door which had been left open. When we left the show, there were reporters and news trucks outside trying to learn what had happened -- though they knew more than most of the audience, who only knew there had been a delay and then they had finally seen the show.
Hadn't thought about this incident in a while, but I just looked up Adrian Bailey on IBDb and it says his last show was The Littler Mermaid. So sad that this accident did indeed end his Broadway career, it seems.
Posted by MTVMANN 2012-05-06 11:42:12
I saw Elaine Stritch in "A Little Night Music" and she turned 'Liasons' into a 15 minutes song and someone from the pit had to call up a line to her during the song.
She was also getting lost in her dialogue with Fredricka and the little girl had to bail her out a few times and add some stuff to make her own lines make sense. I was nervous for her because I knew the script so well. And that poor orchestra kept vamping and vamping...
Posted by showchoirguy 2012-05-06 11:51:58
When I saw Phantom a year ago, the scene where they transition to Notes/ Prima Donna, we hear this crack! It turns out during the transition the candelabras broke and we ended up having a 15 minute intermition.
Posted by Rainbowhigh23 2012-05-06 12:03:21
At a performance of Equus in 2007 Sir Richard Griffiths forgot his lines twice. He was fine the rest of the performance.
Brett Michaels slamming into the descending scenery at the Tony Awards (saw it televised).
Posted by JohnyBroadway 2012-05-06 12:07:42
At Phantom a couple years ago, the chadelier didn't rise during the overture. The show paused and was back up and running ten minutes later.
Posted by songanddanceman2 2012-05-06 12:12:15
I was injured on stage during a run of a thriller i had written and hat was produced in the UK called 'M'
My character had quite a nasty attack scene in the show where i was thrown on top of a table and strangled before falling down behind the table in a bid to escape. The scene was playing fine and all very safe and then i fell down the back of the table as was staged but someone had left a real glass on stage behind this set piece (we think it was another actor who had ordered a drink from upstairs before the show and left the glass on stage). I fell on to the glass and it ripped open my right knee. I had 2 scenes before the end of act 1 where i did not leave the stage and did not notice that everywhere i walked blood was trailing behind me, my grey trousers i were wearing were soaked in blood. At the interval it was bandaged up and i completed the show only to have to go straight to hospital the next day to have 8 stitches. I refused to take time off from the show though so completed the run stitches an all.
Posted by dramamama611 2012-05-06 12:23:54
Whoopi was late for the begining of Act II in forum, jumps to mind. But the more shows you see, the more mistakes you notice. You are also more likely to notice errors with shows you are familiar with.
Posted by CarlosAlberto 2012-05-06 12:28:54
Bernadette Peters' performance in FOLLIES!
JUST KIDDING! HEH! HEH!
Posted by LizzieCurry 2012-05-06 12:36:38
There's actually a whole site here dedicated to Phantom bloopers: http://www.freewebs.com/lamentablemess/main.htm
Posted by alwaysfia 2012-05-06 13:53:51
When I saw Legally Blonde the first time on Broadway, Laura Bell Bundy's shoe came off during "So Much Better". The second time, her wig came off during "Positive". She ad-libbed through the scene, and the whole audience was in stitches. Fortunately, I haven't been witness to any incidents in which the actors were harmed!
Posted by kyl3fong2 2012-05-06 14:13:21
When I saw GHOST during the scene when Caissie Levy and Richard Fleeshman's characters "make love" on stage the curtain started coming down and got caught in one of the side LED panels. There was a loud cranking sound and they ended up having to raise the curtain back up as pieces of the moving side panel fell off onto the stage.
Posted by CurtisB 2012-05-06 14:29:10
I saw Lupone fall and almost crash into one of those light fixtures on New Years Eve Day during "Patti and Mandy".
Posted by James885 2012-05-06 14:37:12
A few years ago I caught the Aida tour and during 'Every Story Is A Love Story', when all the museum set pieces are supposed to slide offstage, the big tomb in the middle got stuck and wouldn't move. It remained there throughout the first half of 'Fortune Favors The Brave' until finally some stagehands ran on and pushed it off. It was funny to see the cast attempt to dance around it. I forgot who was playing Radames, but he looked like he was about to burst out laughing.
This isn't really an accident but when I saw Legally Blonde on tour, during 'Whipped Into Shape' one guy's jump rope kept getting tangled up.
Posted by bwayrose7 2012-05-06 14:45:13
When I saw the Wicked tour a month or so ago, during "Popular" Alli Mauzey is very physical, leaping around the stage, stretching in place, etc. On this particular night she also did the splits and then couldn't get up. Mamie Parris finally had to stop laughing long enough to go over and help her up. Once she was on her feet, Alli just looked around, gestured towards the floor where she had just been, and deadpanned, "Don't do that."
Posted by MattDean 2012-05-06 15:04:53
During a performance of Elaine Paige's run in Sunset Blvd, London, she slipped and had to grab hold of the back drop to break her fall. She laughed (a lot!) and then continued to sing through her laughter - as did whoever played Joe. Very amusing:)
During a performance of the short run of Always (if that's what it was called, the Edward & Mrs Simpson musical) a dancing butler, who was part of a chorus line doing a Charleston around the orchestra pit, fell flat on his rear and dropped the tray of stuck on glasses he was holding. He got straight back up but looked very embarrassed and awkward for the remainder of the number. It was the best part of the show!
Posted by gabrieljwickedone 2012-05-06 15:18:11
On the Hello, Dolly tour they performed at an outdoor theatre (Starlight Theatre in Kansas City) and a deer came on stage. Carol Channing turned to the deer and said "I believe this is my scene".
Posted by South Fl Marc 2012-05-06 17:19:17
I've seen a lot of stage accidents that were fun. Some however I wish I had not seen.
The worst accident was during the premier performance of "The Makropolis Case" at the Met. The opera is about a woman who has found the secret of immortality.
The first performance had been postponed due to a blizzard. A couple days later they tried again. The first scene takes place in a law office. The set had file cabinets that went up forever. In the first two minutes of the show Tenor Richard Versalle, who was in his 60's, was on a ladder 20 or 30 feet up. He sang his line "Too bad you can only live so long", had a stroke, fell off the ladder and died.
The curtain immediately was dropped and a stunned audience was told to go home. It was a horrible experience.
When the show had its next performance the ladder was still there but the character did not go up it.
Posted by TheatreDiva90016 2012-05-06 17:23:33
Older performers can 'leak' if they cough or laugh too hard...
Posted by Playbilly 2012-05-06 17:44:02
A dancer tripped herself and fell off stage, into the audience in Smokey Joe's Cafe. She just laid there for a couple of minutes. The audience was stunned, but the cast just went on with the number. She got up and hobbled back stage. The show continued and she finally showed up again for the last number.
Also saw a horrible The Gin Game where Ralph Waite couldn't remember his lines. It made me so nervous I left at intermission.
Posted by trentsketch 2012-05-06 17:44:53
Not onstage, but the understudy for Norbert Leo Butz in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels hurt his leg running down from the balcony during a performance. Jon Lithgow addressed the audience as they wrangled the standby into the costume about what happened.
When I saw In My Life, the angel's cane top flew off and almost hit me during the big skeleton song and dance number.
I blacked out onstage during a revue when I misjudged a flip and smacked my head into the set. I woke up after the chorus and got back to dancing. Apparently, no one noticed that I might have killed myself onstage. They thought I was milking a moment.
Posted by CapnHook 2012-05-06 19:01:08
Mary Martin was once slammed into a wall when flying during PETER PAN.
At the Opening Night of NICE WORK IF YOU CAN GET IT, one of the female chorus member's heels broke causing her to fall. She performed the next number barefoot.
At a Six Flags theme park, I believe it was, there was a Looney Tunes show. Daffy Duck's costume glove fell off and Foghorn Leghorn had to try to help him put it back on. It's extremely difficult to grasp anything with these costume gloves, and they were having a difficult time. The glove fell onto the floor again, and was kicked onto dead center stage by Yosemite Sam. Porky Pig kicked it back upstage where a stagehand and Sylvester went backstage and was fixing the wardrobe malfunction. Now, if you can picture this, this incident occurred while the show's audio track played continuously, so all the characters had lines/lyrics throughout. I'm sure this confused all the kids when they could hear Daffy and Sylvestor talking, but their characters weren't onstage.
A few weeks ago at PORGY AND BESS, Norm Lewis exited the show at intermission and his understudy went on for Act 2. During the Storm, when he Porgy is supposed to trip and fall, his cane fell into the Orchestra Pit. An audience member in the front row reached in, grabbed it, and threw it onstage.
All three times I saw SPIDER-MAN, which were months apart, a bumblee fell off that ridiculous villain costume and almost tripped the next villain entering.
About 10? years ago at a performance of a national touring production of THE KING & I, a child climbed the steps onto the stage to join the other children.
I won't say which show, but last week I attended a performance where the lead actor had a snot bubble and as he shouted his next line, the snot shot out his nose and landed on his chest. And it was a HUGE glob! Luckily, it was his last line of the scene before exiting.
Posted by vampire killer 91 2012-05-06 19:31:23
The only thing that really springs to mind is a pretty strange incident that happened in the london phantom last year. When the phantom is at the top of the building just before the chandelier went down a large piece of hard plastic backing fell from one of the stage lights hitting a lady in the second row on the head! She and her family left in the interval and i'm assuming the left after being compensated. Was totally wierd.
Posted by broadwaybabe1234 2012-05-06 19:50:12
I was at Damn Yankees at the Fifth ave two nights ago and the show stopped after a flat was be brought in. We heard a crack, the flat reverberated and all the actors ran off stage. THen they brought down the show curtain and proceeded to stop the show for 20 minutes
My friend on the stage management team said the automation messed up. Two flats were brought in instead of one and the second one hit the lockers and the lockers fell into the fly rig, messing up the rigging for the rest of the show. The fixed what they could for the rest of the show and then came in really early the next day to fix the remaining damage.
Posted by aasjb4ever 2012-05-06 20:18:20
The first time I saw The Book of Mormon, Lewis Cleales Jesus mustache was half-falling off of his face when he entered during Spooky Mormon Hell Dream.
Posted by HBP 2012-05-06 20:49:38
I've mentioned this WICKED incident from 2004 quite a few times on here... but it's interesting, so I'll tell it again:
During Elphaba's entrance at the end of "No One Mourns the Wicked", Shoshana Bean ran out to make her entrance from the back of the stage. About halfway downstage, she stumbled a little and, holding her suitcase, began to fall forward. Since the stage is raked, she was unable to stop herself and kept on stumbling right into the orchestra pit. There was a collective gasp from the audience as she fell. Luckily, she was able to do a 180 and catch herself on the stage with her arms and the suitcase.
The rest of the cast did NOTHING for a good 10 seconds as Shoshana struggled to pull herself up. Eventually, Megan Hilty broke character and ran downstage to give her a hand. After literally pulling her up, Shoshana went on with the performance without a hitch. I'm sure they had a good laugh about it after the show. But what the eff, why didn't any of the ensemble members pull her up? It would have made way more sense than Glinda from the future stepping into her own flashback.
Also, for the rest of the performance - and apparently for a few days after - there was a big hole in the tarp that covers half of the pit at the Gershwin where Shoshana's leg went through. I found out later that the tarp was there to protect the instruments from the bubbles that come out during the opening song.
Posted by bklynBridge95 2012-05-06 21:52:41
I saw Laura Bell Bundy's wig come off during bend and snap she turned to Paulette and asked her to help put her hair back on it was really funny
I forget where I was for this maybe West Side Story? however someone got shot but the gun shot didn't go off so whoever it was just turned and screamed BANG!
And last there was Wicked when the 2 of them are running away with the lion I don't know what the heck happened but he hit a puddle or something and he was on the ground the lion cage broke open with the stuffed animal on the floor and she turns to him and says "don't shake him" we were in stitches but I felt really bad cause he did hit the ground hard
Posted by amoni2 2012-05-07 00:11:40
I was at a Saturday matinee early in Rosie's "Grease" run when as the curtain came down for intermission, Rosie came out in front and tearfully said that Marsha Lewis had fallen thru an open trap door and they were attending to her and they'll see how to proceed. Intermission over and the show resumes and Trouper Marsha went on with the show. A few months later, I talked to her about it and said it was scary and she was still seeing a Chiropractor because of it.
Posted by orangeskittles 2012-05-07 08:07:50
I personally witnessed:
-Idina Menzel falling through the trapdoor at Wicked
-Shoshana Bean's foot getting caught in the trapdoor at Wicked
-the car breaking down for 45 minutes at Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
-fire alarm going off during the show at West Side Story in DC
-fire alarm going off at a regional production of Next Fall
Also, the day I decided I was going to see Spiderman, Christopher Tierney fell, so I decided to skip it, for the safety of all involved.
It doesn't happen all the time, but it tends to happen more often to me than anyone else I know.
Posted by theeatah 2012-05-07 08:39:00
In Caroline O'Connor's recent run in Gypsy:
She flung her arms out during "Some People" and caught her long, beaded necklace, which flew up and hit her in the face. She barely flinched.
In "From New York to Seattle", she tried to whistle to one of the boys, and no sound came out. Then, she almost fell when taking a seat on a suitcase right in the middle of "goooodbyyyyyyyye"; forcing her to stop singing mid-note while she steadied herself.
She also had a wardrobe malfunction at the beginning of "Rose's Turn", where her dress was unbuttoned at the front, revealing a black bra. She quickly did up the buttons as she sauntered to the catwalk.
I should point out that these weren't all at the same performance.
I was struck by O'Connor's sense of fun in the face of mishap. She could clearly laugh at herself (she almost cracked up during the non-whistle, and the near fall), yet remained very professional (she took them all in stride, and held it together). The lady knows what she is doing.
Posted by Huss417 2012-05-07 08:45:40
I just thought of another one. I was at LuPone's final in Sunset in London. Right before the set comes down the stage went dark and the curtain came down. They could not get the car to move to bring the mansion down. After a wait of a few minutes they made an announcement about it and said the bars are open and drinks are on the house. I never saw so many people get up so fast.
I would say it was about 30 minutes and the show resumed. I believe it also happened at the matinee the same day.
Posted by mamaleh 2012-05-07 09:22:24
I was at the same PATTI & MANDY performance as Curtis B. After Patti's fall, she did the rest of the show in her newly ragged hose, which I found charming and natural. In fact, the whole show became so free-wheeling, even her dogs were brought out. That was one of the best concert performances I've ever seen.
During one performance of THE BOY FROM OZ, Hugh Jackman cut his hand on a piece of moving scenery. You could see the blood pretty clearly against his skin and the white top-hat-and-tails costume he wore.
Back in my student days, I remember during the opening waltz of the original production of A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC, I began to smell something acrid in the air. Sure enough, they stopped the show for about 15 minutes. Firefighters came in, inspected, presumably tended to whatever had been amiss, and pretty soon William Daniels and crew were again blithely waltzing and changing partners.
Also, I recall Fritz Weaver--one of my all-time favorite actors--going up on the admittedly complex lyrics to "A Hymn to Him" ("Why Can't a Woman Be More Like a Man?") in a City Center production of MY FAIR LADY. He seemed to go blank and then very smartly used the exasperation of Higgins' character at that moment to make his muttering and storming off into the wings perfectly in character and believable. A few moments later, he came back on stage and picked up the song at the proper point. A very deft save.
Posted by BroadwayShowTime 2012-05-07 13:31:24
I remember Aida had an accident in Chicago prior to Broadway. Where Heather Headley and Adam Pascal both fell about 8 feet to the stage when the tomb carrying them malfunctioned.
Posted by THEATRICAL100 2012-05-07 13:58:50
Grease needed a trap? Why?
Posted by EricMontreal22 2012-05-07 14:45:01
Didn't a dancer in Allegro lose a foot or something when it got caught in the elaborate on stage tracks the screens slid in and out on?
Posted by JRybka 2012-05-07 15:18:17
The person who said the AIDA problem.. Was that in DC? I remember that too when they did it at the Kennedy Center.
I remember seeing a tour of Dreamgirls at Hershey Theater where Roz White literally lost her voice during the finale of Act One. She couldn't sing any of And I am Telling You... It was so bad, I had heard she was replaced the next day.
Posted by LizzieCurry 2012-05-07 15:19:44
Posted by Wynbish 2012-05-07 15:20:41
Penny Reilly allegedly broke her vagina in a harness accident in the Mean Girls national tour.
See Submissions Only!
Posted by Mister Matt 2012-05-07 15:34:17
Beauty and the Beast (Houston Tryout) - Harness wasn't attached to the Beast for the transformation. He simply got up and took of his mask.
Witches of Eastwick (West End) - One of the harness didn't descend for the flying sequence at the end of the first act. All three women remained seated on the sofa and just waved their arms around.
Legally Blonde (Broadway) - Trap opened for a set to rise up and got stuck for a few minutes. Annaleigh bounced on stage and exclaimed, "Omigod, you guys! There's a big hole in the floor!"
My Fair Lady (West End) - Martine McCutcheon and Jonathan Pryce got a bad case of the giggles during the "teaching" sequence.
Kiss Me, Kate (Broadway revival) - Curtain got snagged on one of the sets as it was rolling on and a stage hand had to come onstage to fix it.
Kopit & Yeston's Phantom (Houston Tryout) - Richard White got laryngitis and performed the spoken dialogue, but lip-synced the songs while Stephen Lehew sang from the pit.
Jekyll & Hyde (Pre-Broadway Tour) - Giant mirror descended for In His Eyes at an alarming rate and SLAMMED loudly onto the stage behind Robert Cuccioli causing him to visibly jump in his chair.
City of Angels (National Tour) - Curtain got stuck a couple feet from the stage as it rose for the opening and all that could be seen during the City of Angels Theme were the Angel City 4 from the knees down.
On the Putting It Together DVD, there is a bonus feature of Carol Burnette's skirt falling off during a performance.
Posted by Broadway61004 2012-05-07 21:54:36
Cabaret (1998 revival) back in about 2001 or so:
For those who didn't see it, the basic set consisted of a large platform with three doors in the front of it, on top of which the orchestra sat. For the final scene, the orchestra has disappeared, however their chairs and music stands remained. The front of the platform flies out as the chorus girls begin entering from beneath it.
Well, on this particular night, one of the music stands was too close to the edge, and when the front of platform flew out, it caught the stand and lifted it about ten feet in the air before the stand fell, shattering into pieces on top of the platform and sending chunks of metal flying down from above, mind you as the chorus girls are continuing to enter directly below. Miraculously no one was hurt and most actually kept their composure, although as soon as the show ended the entire backstage crew was out there as though they were responding to a fire.
Also, at a dinner theatre in Orlando about 20 years ago (I believe the show was called "Capones"?) One of the main actors completely lost his lines, trying to ad lib and eventually flat out saying he had no idea what his line was supposed to be. What made it so funny though is that he began wandering through the audience (as actors in this show did) and then accidentally knocked over a patron's coffee, spilling it all over the poor audience member. So not only do you forget your lines, but you spill coffee all over someone in the process.
Posted by adam.peterson44 2012-05-08 00:23:01
In a recent Newsies performance, in the scene where Jeremy and Kara kiss, a little kid called out loudly right after their kiss, "that was disgusting!", and the whole audience started cracking up and Kara was visibly trying to suppress some major giggles, which made the audience laugh harder. After about a minute of that, Jeremy looked out at the audience with a "seriously?" expression that made everyone laugh harder at the fourth wall breaking down some more, and then he held up his hand to try to get the audience to settle down before continuing with the scene.
Posted by fosca3 2012-05-08 07:13:39
During the 10th Anniversary performance of Les Mis on Broadway, Robert Marien was hit in head by the turning barricade after the 'fall' of the barricade (above his eyebrow, if I remember right -- I have a picture somewhere)
He did the rest of the show with a little white bandage on his face (I thought it was part of his costume at first), but at the stage door afterwards he said what had happened
Posted by BwayBaby18 2012-05-08 07:45:06
One evening during NICE WORK previews one of the chorus girls' zipper on her dress was stuck and she was forced to wear it for the rest of the number. At the same performance during "Fascinating Rhythm" when Micheal McGrath builds the barricade in front of the door he pulled the little truck carrying the tea table and chairs out of alignment and during the height of the number two crew guys in blacks had to very quickly run out and pull it off.
Posted by amoni2 2012-05-08 09:18:09
"Grease needed a trap? Why?"
When Sam Harris is singing "Magic Changes" the chorus is behind him in a pit simulating an audience in front of a stage. I'm assuming the floor didn't close and in she went.
Posted by tamra2 2012-05-08 10:49:48
i was at a performance of Spring Awakening when the movable part of the stage malfunctioned and moved bckwards when it was not supposed to. it ran over poor Lea Michele's foot and she was injured. the show stoppd for a couple minutes while they had someone look at her foot. She then came back out and finished the show which impressed me because I am a baby when it comes to pain, and I know it was her job to perform but after that I would have just let my understudy go on.
Posted by sorano916 2012-05-08 11:13:44
I saw American Idiot four times after Stark Sands (Tunny) left. Out of those four times, his replacement made mistakes during three performances.
The first performance, he totally blanked during "City of the Damned" and then mixed up his lines during "Before the Lobotomy (Reprise)"
The second performance, he mixed up lines during "Are We the Waiting" and I could see the ensemble behind him suppressing their laughter.
The third performance, he mixed up lines during "City of the Damned" which caused Van Hughes (Johnny) to mixed up his lines.
Theo Stockman got lines mixed up in the show every once in a while, too, but he went on with conviction and that it unless you were really paying attention to lines, you wouldn't have noticed.
One performance, John Gallagher Jr. (Johnny) smacked himself in the face during "Jesus of Suburbia" and started to bleed. Before he, Stark & Michael Esper (Will) went up on the scaffolding, Michael got a rag and gave to John to wipe/stop the blood.
Posted by Gothampc 2012-05-08 11:15:40
Well if we're talking tech mis-haps, I recently posted one.
I went to see The Best Man. In Act 3, Eric McCormack and John Laroquette are seated having a discussion. The lights go out and the audience thought it was the end of the scene. A few seconds later, the audience hears Laroquette's voice: "This is not part of the play.". The lights come back on, but then the front curtain starts to descend. It goes about halfway down and then rises again.
Posted by carolinaguy 2012-05-08 12:31:46
At "Wicked" a few years ago, the bubble machinery caught in Glinda's wig and pulled the actress backwards a few feet before one of the Ozians ran forward and untangled her. She gave the bubble a devastating glare and continued with the scene.
Posted by BrodyFosse123 2012-05-08 12:53:56
just thought of another one. I was at LuPone's final in Sunset in London. Right before the set comes down the stage went dark and the curtain came down. They could not get the car to move to bring the mansion down.
With all due respect to you, the original London production of SUNSET BLVD. with LuPone did NOT have the full-scale replica of the Isotta Fraschini towncar when she was in the show -- they used a projection for those scenes. The full-scale replica of the towncar was created for the Los Angeles production and eventually added to the London production when they incorporated the American modifications done to the musical. If this bit did happen, it definitely was NOT when LuPone was in the show.
Also, for all the obvious reasons (backstage/wing space), the Isotta Franschini towncar was stored in the rafters -- suspended. It was only lowered for its appearance in Act 2 then raised again in the rafters. I know this because one of my exes worked in various productions of SUNSET BLVD: Los Angeles, Broadway, London and Germany.
Posted by justoldbill 2012-05-08 22:57:44
Many years ago I saw a performance of FIND YOUR WAY HOME where Jane Alexander injured herself on stage. At first, it looked like a staged response to the news that her husband was sleeping with the character played by Michael Moriarty. It seemed very interestingly staged until it could be seen that she was, in fact, bleeding. Game girl that she is, she continued the scene to its conclusion, making the best of the situation. God bless her.
Posted by EponineAmneris 2012-05-10 14:55:14
During a perfomance of the musical THE FROGS, Nathan Lane slipped through an open trap door... a trap door that was left open by a careless crew member. Nathan was back in the show the next night. The crew member was not The story is that the producers and the stage manager made a big deal about it (as well they should have) but Nathan laughed it off and took it all... and the few stiches in his left leg... as an "occupational hazard."
Posted by Emma White 2013-02-23 17:21:54
My grandfather was at Annie Get Your Gun in 1999 when Bernadette Peters ran off stage right before (during? I'll have to ask) Doin' What Comes Natur'lly. Turns out (she tells the story on Martin Short and in her Ask a Star) BP was sick and ran off to throw up. She came back on, got through Can't Get a Man with a Gun and then puked again. She finished the first act, and the understudy did the second one.
Posted by Emma White 2013-02-23 17:21:55
Posted by Scott Briefer 2013-02-23 19:01:02
I'm surprised nobody wrote about this one...
During a performance of Song and Dance, Bernadette Peters lost her voice. She was a real trouper, but none-the-less, it was painful to watch, and listen to. Her voice started to go very early during Tell Me On A Sunday. By midway through the act, she was no longer hitting the notes. As it's a one-woman performance there was nothing short of stopping the show that would rescue her. I think most of the audience was hoping that they would stop the show, but they didn't. It was truly uncomfortable to watch. I felt horrible for her.
Posted by TheGingerBreadMan 2013-02-23 19:17:27
I was at a performance of PETER PAN with Cathy Rigby. Cathy's harness went jack and she flew in to her first scene about 3 minutes early. It was actually pretty funny.
Posted by quizking101 2013-02-23 19:26:07
I remember at the third preview of LEAP OF FAITH, the rotation of the tent during Act II grinded loudly and stopped, with the lights immediately coming up and Raul Esparza striding off stage.
I remember press night at GHOST when Caissie Levy started singing "Nothing Stops Another Day" (ironically), then a piece of scenery ****3d up and she went from an "Oh sh!t" look, to a grin, to striding off stage all in about 10 seconds...and the show didn't resume again for 45 minutes.
Everything about SCANDALOUS...
And finally, during (the current) CAT ON A HOT TIN ROOF, in Big Daddy's and Brick's big Act II confrontation, Benjamin Walker slammed his crutch against the bed hard enough for the padding on top to fly offstage perfectly (as if it was a well-positioned projectile). Walker went through the rest of the act and the first part of Act III with the busted crutch until an actor playing a butler came onstage and switched off the crutches.
Posted by ChairinMain 2013-02-24 00:09:50
Ok, this is a second-hand story, and I can't confirm it's real, but it is too funny not to share:
Apparently one night during a run of WEST SIDE STORY, Chino forgot his gun. Now, if I were in that situation, I'd...I dunno, run up to Tony and pretend to stab him or strangle him. Instead, Chino decides the best thing to do is throw his shoe at Tony. Then, after Tony has died, Maria turns to Chino and ad libs "Why, Chino? Why the Poisoned Boot?!"
Posted by Brave Sir Robin2 2013-02-24 00:24:21
Another WEST SIDE STORY one: Maria accidentally fired the gun at Consuela, and Consuela had to die on stage, exclaiming, "You bitch!" I can't even.
Posted by karimfantom 2013-02-24 01:40:21
Community production of Little Women. Jo has a very VERY fast quick change. about 20 seconds. in about half the performances, there was a tiny wardrobe malfunction (like a few buttons unbuttoned, zipper not up all the way, hoop crooked, wig looking bad). One night, the director was backstage and decided to help do the quick change. The dress was accidentally put on inside-out(because it was very dark in the wings). So instead of letting her go on stage anyway (mind you, nobody would notice it was inside-out), the director decides to try to fix it.
our diva, decides she is not going to miss her entrance. she ended up going on stage singing a 3 minute solo in her undergarments. which were peach, just like her skin color.
Posted by ChairinMain 2013-02-24 12:31:51
Oh! That reminds me of one!
Junior year at college we did LITTLE WOMEN. Closing night, Jo quick changes into her dress for the ball scene, complete with big-ass hoop skirt. She gets through "I'd be delighted" just fine, but then, during the scene with Laurie, before "Take a chance on me" the hoop skirt starts to slip. She heroically continues, before abruptly stepping out of the hoop, throwing it offstage and remarking "those things are so uncomfortable!" perfectly in character. She continues the scene holding her skirts in a bunch so they don't drag on the ground and anger the horrified costume designer, who is staring at her from offstage, even more.
Posted by ghostlight2 2013-02-24 12:44:17
A Chorus Line, Charlotte d'Amboise, Music and the Mirror. Towards the end of the dance, her skirt began to slip. Realizing the inevitable, she ripped it off, flung it into the wings and finished the dance.
"I just looked up Adrian Bailey on IBDb and it says his last show was The Littler Mermaid. So sad that this accident did indeed end his Broadway career, it seems."
He fell at least forty feet to the deck and sustained injuries that affect him to this day.
Posted by CONAries 2013-02-24 13:17:06
A few at Wicked in London.
- There was a loud pop during the scene between Elphaba and Morrible after "I'm not that girl," the lights went out and the speakers stopped, theres a 10 minute blackout, then everything came back on and they picked it up.
- The Wizard forgot the bottle of elixer in his scene with Glinda. I was sat front row and saw him waving to people side of stage that he had forgotten something. When it finally came to the moment he had stolen one of the small green light bulbs on the back of the Oz head an improvised with that.
- I was also there at the hideous night when Kerry Ellis wasnt clipped into the flying machine in Defying Gravity properly, and she screamed out in distress as she was rising, half hanging out of the machine. Was very horrible, and after a 15 minute break, she resumed to sing the end of the song on ground level.
From shows i've done. I was in a production of Macbeth, where somebody tore tendons in the hand during a rehearsal with a dagger. Then on the actual night, Macbeth sliced his knee open with a sword, limped off stage and was rushed to hospital, got stitched up and made it back for that evenings performance.
Was also recently in a Production of Sweeney Todd where the chair went over as Sweeney pushed the beggar woman on to it, she fell on the floor. He slit her throat there, and then slid her head first down the ramp, and she bruised a few ribs in the process.
Posted by givesmevoice 2013-02-24 13:17:30
When I saw Lovemuisk in previews, after a scene where Lenya and Weill have an argument, Donna Murphy turned to storm off and slipped on a backdrop that draped several inches on the stage and bit it pretty hard.
Posted by RENT_is_Wicked2 2013-02-24 13:30:50
When I saw Wicked in 2011, "No Good Deed" started playing and you could hear Teal Wicks yell "Fiyero" but the podium didn't rise from under the stage. The podium then rised eventually without her on it as she kept singing and she finally appeared coming up from below stage right like she does in Defying Gravity.
Posted by Demitri2 2013-02-24 14:21:38
Saw the great Barbara Harris in THE APPLE TREE where she had voice problems throughout the performance. During the Adam and Eve segment she could hardly sing and her voice cracked terribly. It was very unsettling to watch. Strange thing was as the evening progressed her voice actually improved and got stronger. By the final PASSIONELLA act, she sounded just fine and was triumphant by evening's end.
Not so lucky was Patti LuPone during the very last performance of EVITA in L.A. (pre Broadway). Student seats back then were three bucks so the people at the box office knew me by the end of the run. The guy at the box office told me Patti's voice was shot due to recording the 2 LP cast album during the day that week. However she didn't want to disappoint her fans and friends by not appearing. She made it through "Buenos Aires" but afterwards her singing voice kept cracking badly. By "A New Argentina" not only could she no longer sing but she couldn't even shout out the lyrics. She was replaced for the second act by her understudy.
I saw Julie Andrews during her end of the VICTOR!VICTORIA! run. She struggled throughout the evening and actually seemed surprised at the notes that were (weren't) coming out. It was particularly upsetting to see a Broadway icon at the end of her singing career. There was this terrible buzz that went through the audience each time she cracked or was unable to hit the note. I was glad when the curtain came down.
I was at Streisand's "A Happening at Central Park" when Babs forgot her song lyrics. No big deal at all but it seemed to bother her. It was a truly magical night and as a momento I'm on the DVD standing in the very front row.
Saw a dancer injure himself due to a scenery mishap during a performance of the musical CHAPLIN starring Anthony Newley. He fell from quite a height and needed help as he staggered and was finally carried off the stage. It was very upsetting to watch. Always wondered if it ended his career as a dancer.
During a performance of A DOLL'S LIFE the scenery from stage left and right was intended to meet in the center. However it didn't and there was a free falling gap of about three feet between the converging pieces. It was truly entertaining watching the chorus deal with the mishap. The very first member hesitated and then carefully lept across the open space. After that each suceeding person in line followed suit and carefully made the jump. Comden and Green were sitting next to me and seemed to be amused by the moment too.
I'm sure I'm forgetting a lot more but hey that's what LIVE theatre is all about.
Posted by TheGingerBreadMan 2013-02-24 15:06:46
A personal experience: I played the Sultan in ALADDIN. In the opening scene where the new suitors come to meet Jasmine, the actress playing Jasmine and I were on top of a big podium that stood about 10-15 feet or so in the air. She fell off during a tech rehearsal, and only came back to finish the last week of the run. (The run was 2.5 months)
Posted by PTOPhan 2013-02-24 17:12:24
I've mentioned this one on other threads. During the recent run of "My Fair Lady" at Arena Stage, in Washington, DC, the flu traveled through the cast, and a few performances near the end of the run had to be cancelled. The next to last day of the run, a chorus member went on, book in hand, to play Eliza, because both the lead and her cover were sick. At the next to last show, a Sunday matinee, the lead had returned, but she coughed repeatedly during the first scene. During the dancing in "Wouldn't it be Loverly," her partners were visibly supporting her. I whispered to my husband that we were about to see the understudy take over. Wrong! The cover was still out, and they ended the show after "A Little Bit of Luck." Bummer for all concerned.
Posted by onedaymore 2013-02-25 19:14:21
I saw Ragtime at Drury Lane (which really should have been the revival) and right at the very beginning, the little boy comes out and says his lines, and the family was supposed to come up from a platform in the middle of the stage. The boy was standing downstage, clueless that the platform didn't actually raise, starts to sing "The skies were blue and hazy..." by himself. Once he figured it out, his face went blank. They had to start the show over. The kid's reaction was cute, though. Show turned out fine once they started over.
Well, minus the fact that Quentin Earl Darrington let out a disgusting gigantic gob of spit on stage while he was singing his lament in act 2.
Posted by Bettyboy72 2013-02-25 19:34:30
I saw Evita at the Carousel Dinner Theatre and during High Flying Adored, a maid undressing Eva caught Eva's slip on her gown and pulled one side of Eva's slip down exposing her breast and could not get the dress unstuck from the slip. Eva finished the song cupping her naked breast. Now thats a trooper.
Posted by bobs3 2013-02-26 16:55:14
At one of the early previews of the Roundabout's THE MAN WHO CAME DINNER, Jean Smart was making her entrance wearing stiletto high heels. There were two steps that she had to walk down to the main playing area. She missed one of the steps and fell flat on her ass. Nathan Lane stood up from his wheelchair and director Jerry Zaks who was seated in the front row started running toward the stage. Ms. Smart, a true professional, jumped up did a "ta-da" (like do I know how to make an entrance), the audience cheered and the rest of the show went on without a hitch. I've always wondered if she continued wearing those stiletto heels in future performances.
Posted by Matteo 2013-02-26 21:29:33
I saw Laurel Harris' first performance as Eva in "Evita" this past October. During the number "And the Money Kept Rolling In", Eva has an onstage quick change done by a few of the ensemble females. It was pretty obvious that it wasn't running smoothly, but it seemed they had gotten it all together. About 2 lines in the song after the change, Laurel's skirt piece began to slide down. She pulled it up a few times before it was just quicker to hold onto it, and continued to do so until she had a few bars to herself that she could turn upstage and completely refasten the skirt. I was very worried the entire song that it was going to fall, especially with the big lift at the end...
Posted by PitPro2004 2013-02-27 20:06:56
CRAZY FOR YOU: Harry Groener desperately tried to get thru a performance despite a horrific case of food poisoning. He and Jodi Benson were halfway thru the dance portion of "Shall We Dance" when his cramps were so bad, he doubled over on stage and motioned for the stage hands to drop the curtain, saying he couldn't go on. I think he missed another performance that weekend.
One night the saloon set got hooked on something and slammed to a halt with a big BANG that was heard round the world! They drew the curtain and you could hear techs behind it yelling out to each other. 10 minutes later the sets were untangled but at the cost of an ensemble member who caught their arm on an exposed nail and ended up having to get a tetanus shot.
Not a Broadway show but; years ago I heard a tale about a community theater production of Fiddler where the girl playing Fruma Sarah was expected to be flown and swung in a flying harness above the cast for her nightmare sequence. Poor thing was scared of heights. Other cast members demonstrated it's ease by allowing themselves to take a flying ride in order to show her how harmless it was. She agreed to do it, but only during actual performances. On opening night she flew...and peed all over the cast below her out of sheer fright.
Costumes got an extra good washing that night.