Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Actor Mistakenly Cuts Own Throat

One of the most thrilling parts of the theatre is the fight choreography and violence. While we may not have the same gory methods of the Romans, who actually massacred victims on stage, or the Elizabethans, who used slaughtered animals, some stage violence can be very real. Of course the intent is to make it as safe as possible for the actors while making it as thrilling as possible. Every once and a while we are given scary reminders to the fact that the violence is real and one tiny little slip can prove painful if not deadly.

Such an instance happened recently in Vienna. Thankfully the event was not fatal.

The Thalia Theatre Ensemble had just arrived in Vienna with their traveling production of Mary Stuart. The needed a new prop knife for the performance to replace a defective prop they had brought Hamburg. The props department forgot to dull the edge and when the actor went to commit suicide in character at that evening's performance, he ended up with an actual gash in his neck. The actor thankfully missed any arteries or veins, but did make a trip to the hospital where he was fixed up.

Note to all actors - be extra careful when participating in stage violence and fight choreography. No matter how basic the fight may seem, one slip can have huge consequences. Be safe.

Happy Birthday: Tim Fountain (b. 1967)

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