First Preview of Thérèse Raquin Halts Following Audience Member Disruption
Interruptions from the audience on Broadway are too frequently becoming a part of our theatre-going experience. Whether it be texting, phone calls or simply talking patrons, it seems as though we cannot go to the theatre anymore without some type of outside world experience barging its way into the experience we’ve wished to step into for 2 hours. However, another type of disturbance, not often seen, halted the first preview of a new Broadway show last night. Today, Luner on Theatre brings you the news that last night’s first preview of Thérèse Raquin came to a halt following a disruptive audience member!
During last night’s first preview of Thérèse Raquin, it is reported an audience member disrupted the performance just moments after it began as he professed his love for film star Keira Knightly who is making her Broadway debut in the production. According to multiple accounts on social media, the young man stood in the aisle between the upper and lower mezzanine shouting to Knightly on stage about marrying him and his love for her. He was reportedly carrying a bouquet of flowers as well. An usher reportedly asked the man to sit down, which he did but continued to speak loudly.
Security and a male usher arrived moments later and forcibly removed the man but not before he was able to throw the flowers from the mezzanine to the stage. Security was able to hold back the man who continued to resist them removing him from the theatre. Gabriel Ebert, another actor in the production, reportedly kicked the flowers into the wing following them landing on the stage. The removal received applause from the audience and just a moment later, it was announced over the god mic “We’re going to take a little hold here”. It is believed the hold occurred to insure safety for the cast and crew with the flowers thrown onstage. It is reported the house lights never came up and just moments later, the production continued on for the rest of the evening uninterrupted.
Roundabout Theatre Company has released the following statement following last night’s incident;
“Roundabout takes the safety of their actors and audiences very seriously and extra security will be added beginning tonight. For obvious reasons, we cannot comment on the exact nature of the additional security measures.”
Multiple accounts from the theatre stated that the actors, including Knightly who was addressed by name, never broke character during the disruption. Audience members believed at first the man was a part of the production but quickly realized it was something more once the actors onstage did not respond to him. Overall, there was much applause for the Thérèse Raquin team for their handling of the situation.
The disturbance is, oddly enough, nothing new to Studio 54 and theatre productions taking place there. Just this past summer, a disturbance interrupted a performance of An Act Of God starring Jim Parsons. And how could we possibly forget when film star Shia LaBeouf was taken from Studio 54 in handcuffs following his disruption of Cabaret starring Alan Cumming? LaBeouf ended up pleading guilty to disorderly conduct following that incident. It seems as the infamous nightclub turned theatre has been home to a list of odd interruptions and disturbances over the past year.
Luner on Theatre is thrilled to hear that no audience members, cast or crew were hurt during the interruption at last night’s first preview of Thérèse Raquin. We have no doubt how serious Roundabout is taking last night’s incident and will provide further security at Studio 54 to ensure everyone involved with Thérèse Raquin is safe at all times. Thérèse Raquin is now in previews and officially opens on Broadway October 29th, 2015. For more information, visit Roundabout Theatre Company’s Official Website, Facebook Page or Twitter. (Copyright Note;Unless noted, we do not own/claim ownership for any photos used in this post) And of course, check out the rest of Luner on Theatre for all your theatre news you don’t only need but want to know and so much more!