×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Aida’ previews continue after weekend accident

Headley, Pascal injured by falling set piece

CHICAGO — Walt Disney Theatricals’ “Aida” is expected to resume preview performances in Chicago Wednesday night after a technical calamity over the weekend resulted in slight injuries to the lead actors in this production of the Elton John-Tim Rice musical and the cancellation of Sunday’s performances.

Heather Headley and Adam Pascal were injured Saturday when the tomb set piece in which they were ensconced crashed onto the stage floor after a cable snapped during the penultimate scene of the show. Eyewitnesses reported hearing the sound of grinding metal, followed by the sight of the actors falling to the floor.

Breaking the fourth wall

After several seconds of silence, an announcement over the public address system asked if there was a doctor in the house. The performance did not continue. Audience members told local television stations that the incident was “terrifying.”

Although both actors were hospitalized Saturday night, a spokesman for the show said Monday that the performers’ injuries were slight and amounted mainly to minor bruising. Headley and Pascal were both treated and released from Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

The previous incarnation of “Aida,” at the Alliance Theater in Atlanta, was also beset by technical difficulties that resulted in the postponement of opening night. In Chicago, critics are not being invited to Robert Falls’ Broadway-bound production until Dec. 9.

It was not known Monday whether Headley and Pascal would appear at Wednesday’s scheduled preview. A spokesman said understudies were standing by.

‘Madness’ malaise

This was a rough weekend for Chi legit. In an unrelated development elsewhere in the Loop, the show “Shear Madness” closed its doors at the Mayfair Theater after 17 years. The interactive comedy, which may yet reopen in another venue, was the innocent victim of code violations at the Blackstone Hotel, which houses the theater.

After 7,114 consecutive performances (making the hair-salon comedy Chicago’s longest-running show by far), producer Bruce Jordan decided Friday night that the venue was no longer safe for either the cast or audience members.

More Legit

  • 'Black Super Hero Magic Mama' Review

    L.A. Theater Review: 'Black Super Hero Magic Mama'

    What function do superhero stories play in American society? Are they merely escapist distractions for head-in-the-clouds teens, or could those same formats actually serve a practical function, providing useful tools for everyday life? Recognizing these comic book fantasies as by far the dominant form of contemporary mythmaking for a generation of young people, emerging playwright [...]

  • Danielle Brooks'Ain't Too Proud - The

    How 'Orange Is the New Black' Star Danielle Brooks Became a Broadway Producer

    Danielle Brooks earned a Tony nomination when she made her Broadway debut as Sofia in the 2015 revival of “The Color Purple,” but now the “Orange Is the New Black” star is working behind the scenes as a producer on the new jukebox musical “Ain’t Too Proud: The Life and Times of the Temptations.” “I [...]

  • Ain't Too Proud review

    Broadway Review: 'Ain't Too Proud'

    In the wake of the long-running “Jersey Boys” and the short-lived “Summer,” director Des McAnuff is back on Broadway with another show built around the song catalog of a music act — and although “Ain’t Too Proud” has all the right sounds and slick moves, this bio-musical of the R&B vocal group the Temptations is [...]

  • 'White Noise' Theater Review: Suzan-Lori Parks

    Off Broadway Review: Daveed Diggs in 'White Noise'

    Any new play by the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Suzan-Lori Parks (“Topdog / Underdog”) demands — and deserves — attention. And in its premiere production at the Public Theater, her latest, “White Noise,” opens with a burst of brainy energy that lasts through the first act. But it takes a nosedive in the sloppy second half, [...]

  • Alexander Dinelaris

    'Jekyll and Hyde' Movie in the Works Based on Broadway Musical

    The Broadway musical “Jekyll and Hyde” is getting the movie treatment from Academy Award winner Alexander Dinelaris. Dinelaris, who is writing and producing the adaptation, won an Oscar for the “Birdman” script and was a co-producer on “The Revenant.” He is producing “Jekyll and Hyde” as the first project under his New York-based development company, [...]

  • Sam Mendes

    Listen: The 'Balls-Out Theatricality' of Sam Mendes

    If you find yourself directing a Broadway play with a cast so big it includes a goose, two rabbits, more kids than you can count and an actual infant, what do you do? If you’re Sam Mendes, you embrace the “balls-out theatricality” of it all. Listen to this week’s podcast below: “There is a kind [...]

  • James Corden Tony Awards

    James Corden to Host 2019 Tony Awards (EXCLUSIVE)

    James Corden has been tapped to once again host the Tony Awards, Variety has learned exclusively. “The Late Late Show” host previously emceed the annual theater awards show in 2016, and won the Tony for best actor in a play for his performance in “One Man, Two Guvnors” in 2012. “I’m thrilled to be returning to [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content