The Lion The Witch... and the Trapdoor

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A performance of The Lion The Witch and the Wardrobe was dramatically halted at West Yorkshire Playhouse after an actor accidentally fell through the stage.

Normally, the only magical portal in C S Lewis's classic Narnia tale is the wardrobe but during a performance on Thursday December 21 in Leeds, one of the actors disappeared through the stage after a trap door suddenly collapsed.

The stage at WYP during the stoppage

The stage at WYP during the stoppage

The incident happened moments into the second half of the performance, about 9pm, when an actor playing 'Squirrel' leapt from the lamppost prop on stage and landed on a trapdoor, which broke, leading to him falling into the gap below.

While the actor made a swift exit, the show briefly continued until a show hand emerged to order the actors off stage and inform the audience there was a problem with the stage.

During the following 15 minutes, crew members tried frantically to repair the broken trap door. At one point a power drill was produced and after some to-ing a fro-ing, the trapdoor was repaired. Once the door was fixed, the crew hands who did the work were given a rousing round of applause as they made their way off stage.

The actors then came back on stage to continue the show, with one playing Father Christmas joking: "This is what happens when you haven't been to a party in 100 years."

The actor playing 'Squirrel' also re-appeared and during one scene in which they share presents, jested: "Do you know, I quite like Christmas, even if I did fall down a hole."

The audience laughed at the ad libbing and the show ran through to its conclusion.

The show, choreographed and produced by Sally Cookson, runs at West Yorkshire Playhouse until January 27.


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