THE BLOG
08/16/2013 01:58 pm ET Updated Oct 16, 2013

Spider-Man: A Hard Lesson About Live Theatre

Last night we were at Spider-Man, Turn Off The Dark. It ended abruptly. One of the dancers got his leg caught in a trap door on stage, apparently. But we didn't know what the problem was as we were watching. It happened after intermission, with everyone seated, there was a yell, a moan, and then more yelling. No one moved because at first we thought it was part of the show. Then we realized there was a problem. The actor playing Norman Osborn left the set. Then stage hands went to a dancer on the stage floor. He was still moaning. There is no curtain to pull, so it was visible to the audience. Then a black screen was put in front of the actor and set crew, trying to help the dancer. There was the sound of a drill. I felt like I was at an awful accident scene inside the Foxwoods Theatre. And in fact, we all were. Our 9-year-old son wanted to know what was going on and how hurt the man was. He also wondered where the firefighters and rescue teams were. We were asked to leave our seats and eventually leave the theatre. We were told our tickets would be refunded. Our son was in tears. He was upset about the injury and sad he wouldn't see the end of the show. He also really didn't understand what had just happened. As we left the Foxwoods Theatre there was an ambulance outside. We explained to our son that what had happened on stage is part of what can sometimes happen in live theatre. Accidents happen. We told him the dancer's well-being is much more important than a missed show.

Today, news reports say the dancer is in serious condition, but he won't lose his foot. In the first part of the Broadway show, watching Spider-man fly through the theatre, you are always aware that danger is present. Live theatre is thrilling for its aliveness and risk. It's especially true for a highly technical production like Spider-Man on Broadway, where dancers and acrobats fly on wires and even land on the balcony. Unfortunately this production has experienced several injuries during the three years it has been on Broadway. Last night our family and everyone in the theatre experienced the down side to the risks involved, those same risks that make the show so watchable.

It makes me pause to say thank you to all the actors and dancers that take the chances they do, so that we the audience can have a truly unique experience. Godspeed recovery to the dancer, Daniel Curry, who was injured.