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5 Things You Wouldn’t Believe Actually Happened on Stage!

Saturday, 22nd Aug 2015

There are many weird and wonderful things that happen on stage, but some of these events might leave you a little shocked!

Theatre mishaps happen. Actors aren’t perfect and sometimes things happen that you just weren’t expecting; a reason for much hilarity to ensue or a seemingly shocked audience reaction. Here we take a look at 5 things that you wouldn’t believe actually happened on stage:


1. The Glass Elevator Malfunction in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Back in 2013, Douglas Hodge was the star of the show at the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane. His Willy Wonka was being whisked up in the great glass elevator with the child actor playing Charlie when it malfunctioned, leaving both actors stranded and having to be rescued. Needless to say, the performance was halted temporarily but soon resumed back on safe ground!


2. Macbeth & The 25lb Weight Near Miss

In 1937, a performance of Macbeth at the Old Vic resulted in a very close call for screen legend Laurence Olivier. At one point, a 25lb weight fell from the ceiling and narrowly missed crushing Mr Olivier during the live performance. Scary!


3. The Ear Shooting in Of Mice and Men

Here’s a theatre mishap we think is really unfortunate! During a rehearsal Of Mice and Men in Florida in 2009, one actor found his prop was actually a real gun when he acted out a scene and proceeded to shoot his fellow actor, resulting in his ear being ripped off. Reports that followed suggested that the bullet had ricocheted off the man’s skull and flown through the ear, ripping flesh off. Ouch!


4. The Accidental Hanging in Italy

In 2000, a 23 year old Italian stage actor called Renato Di Paolo gave audience members a shock they really couldn’t have prepared for. He was playing the role of Judas Iscariot in the play ‘Way of the Cross’ and at one point he had to be tied to a tree by a noose. When he proceeded to Jump off a rock, the noose tightened and he accidentally hung himself. The worst part? Apparently no-one noticed until later on in the play when a fellow actor noticed Di Paolo was unconscious.


5.  The Broadway Show That Will Leave You Speechless

In the 1960s, there was one performance on Broadway that will forever be remembered as perhaps the most cringe-worthy of all! For a performance of ‘Her First Roman’ (a story about Cleopatra and Caesar) one of the chorus girls called Priscilla Lopez had to wear a wig, but it was loose on her head. She decided to pad the wig with underwear and socks and also managed to convince her fellow chorus girls to do the same. Unfortunately, when a bra started sneaking out from under one of the girl’s caps, Lopez started laughing and tried her best to supress the giggles but instead she ended up relieving herself on stage! Because of the stage direction sloping downwards, the urine proceeded to head straight into the orchestra pit and landed on the musicians’ heads! Now there’s something you couldn’t make up!


Do you know of any amusing or shocking stage mishaps? Let us know on our Facebook or Twitter pages.

Article filed under: Theatre News |