Harper was taken to a local hospital as a precaution before her July 29 evening performance after reporting that she was not feeling well. According to a press statement, the stage and screen star "is resting comfortably and will remain in the hospital for observation for the time being."
ET reported that the local fire department received a call about an unconscious 75-year-old woman backstage around 8:56 PM. Harper was transported by ambulance to York Hospital.
"The audiences and all of us here at the Playhouse are greatly enjoying our time with Valerie here in Ogunquit, and we are encouraged that she is feeling better," stated executive artistic producer Bradford T. Kenney.
Entertainment Tonight reports that the actress has since fallen into a coma.
The cast also features Sally Struthers as Duchess Estonia Dulworth, Joey Sorge as Jimmy Winter, Amanda Lea LaVergne as Billie Bendix and James Beaman as Cookie McGee. Larry Raben directs with choreography by Peggy Hickey. Charlie Reuter is music director. Harper, a lung cancer survivor, announced March 6, 2013, that she had been diagnosed with leptomeningeal carcinomatosis, a rare, terminal cancer. Given only three-to-six months to live, her diagnosis turned a corner, and neuro-oncologist Dr. Jeremy Rudnick said in September 2013 that the "Mary Tyler Moore" and "Rhoda" star "was pretty close to remission."
In April 2014, Harper said that although she is not "cancer-free," she remained optimistic and hopeful for the future.
She recently told People, "I'm ready. I'm ready to go... Maybe that's the secret. That I'm absolutely – I don't want to, my God, I want to live to be 102.
"But I am not banking on anything, really, because we shouldn't. We don't know what's around the corner. I think you just take each day and get the best out of it and do what you can and have fun."
Harper also earned a 2010 Tony Award nomination for Looped.
For more information visit ogunquitplayhouse.org or call (207) 646-5511.