Onstage Collapse Halts Broadway's View From the Bridge

News   Onstage Collapse Halts Broadway's View From the Bridge
 
Have you ever been so immersed in a great drama that you almost felt you were going to faint? It actually happened to one unlucky audience member on Broadway Jan. 29.

The evening performance of A View From the Bridge was interrupted by a member of the audience suffering what people around him believed was a heart attack. Not so unusual, but in this case, the audience member was sitting in the production's onstage seating, just a few feet from the action of the play, and the attack came at one of the play's tensest moments.

Another audience member, Omar Gonzalez-Pagan, told Playbill.com, "The incident occurred about three quarters of the way into the show, just as Eddie Carbone was asking for Immigration's number."

Eddie, the play's central character, is sheltering in his home two members of his wife's family from Italy who are in the U.S. illegally. He becomes suspicious that one of them has unsavory designs on his pretty niece. By asking for the phone number of the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service, it means he has decided to betray the young man and have him deported.

Just at that moment, according to Gonzalez-Pagan, "audience members from the stage seating [house right] yelled that someone was having a heart attack."

The classic call for a doctor in the house went out, and three reportedly answered. The victim was attended by them until paramedics showed up about five to seven minutes into the incident. "Once the man was taken away, the show resumed a few minutes after. The staff of the theatre, the audience and everyone acted quite responsibly," the witness said.

A production spokesperson confirmed the incident, but said it was not as serious as it appeared at the time. "An audience member, male, seated in the stage seats fainted during the performance. Evidently he had a heart condition but he did not have a heart attack."

The spokesperson said an EMT took him off the stage in a wheelchair, but he was able to walk from the side entrance of the theatre to the ambulance, which took him to St. Luke's Hospital for observation.

A man identified as Davin Cutchall posted a photo of himself on the show's Twitter page in a hospital bed, with the caption, "Sorry for disrupting the show tonight. I'm feeling better, now. You were great!"

"Overall, the disruption was about 15 minutes, the show continued, and hopefully the man is recovering safely," Gonzalez-Pagan said.

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