Ben Forster has had to pull out of the final week of Elf the Musical after breaking his ankle on stage.
The matinee performance at the Lowry in Salford on Saturday (January 6) was called off mid-show following the incident.
Understudy Colin Burnicle stepped in to cover the lead role of Buddy the Elf for the evening show, with all further performances scheduled to go ahead as planned to January 14.
Forster said in a statement on Twitter: “In the matinee of Elf there was an incident on stage and I broke my ankle.
“Still in hospital at the moment, but all your tweets and messages are keeping my spirits high.”
Forster said he was “heartbroken” to be finishing the run early, but assured audiences they are in “very safe hands” with the “wonderful cast” and “brilliant understudy”.
He added: “Many thanks to all at the Lowry Theatre and all the cast/crew who looked after me. I’ll update you soon but it’s important I focus getting up on my feet ASAP.”
A spokeswoman from the Lowry said: “Unfortunately, Saturday’s matinee of Elf The Musical had to stop following an incident on stage.
“Patrons were offered a full refund or seats for a future performance. Our apologies for any inconvenience caused. All future performances of Elf The Musical at the Lowry are scheduled to go ahead as planned. ”