By Nicole Grant
Last night’s performance of ‘Life’s a Dream’ at the stunning outdoor Minack Theatre, ended abruptly last night when one of the actors fell to the ground, groaning painfully and was rushed off to hospital.
The actor, had been doing an excellent job with no signs of trouble, when he suddenly stumbled forwards from a four foot raised platform and landed with a crash, face first on the ground below. Confusion ensued with hushed actors gathering around their fellow cast member who groaned powerfully through his microphone. Whilst a few audience members assumed this was part of the performance, it became quite clear, quite quickly that a fall from that height, for a man of that age, was never going to end well. The sudden appearance of rain-coat clad marshals on the stage shattered any hopeful illusions and raised the alarm that something had gone very wrong.
One theatre marshal asked repeatedly over his microphone if there was a doctor in the house and pleaded for somebody to call an ambulance. The audience watched in sad disbelief at what, ironically, did seem rather dream-like, until someone politely announced the end of the performance and asked that we all leave.
The mood was somber as the audience shuffled from the beautiful outdoor space and into their cars wondering how the play might have ended and what would be the fate of the poor guy who fell.
‘Life’s a Dream’ is an epic fable of love, war and destiny, brimming with passion and laced with humour, from Cornwall’s award winning Miracle Theatre.
As we travelled home, an ambulance whizzed past us a full 45 minutes after the dramatic fall had occurred and we were all reminded again that sometimes endings are out of our control. In a strange coincidence, on this day 6 years ago an actor in Romeo and Juliet at the Minack Theatre was airlifted to hospital where he later died of a heart attack.
The Minack Theatre commented: “Richard is bruised and sore but has not broken any bones. He is looking forward to being back on stage as soon as he is able.”