A deputy stage manager stepped in to save a performance at Nottingham Playhouse after a cast member was taken ill last minute.
Dan Fredenburgh, who plays Gone With the Wind screenwriter Ben Hecht in Moonlight and Magnolias, fell ill before the performance on March 5.
To ensure the show still went ahead, deputy stage manager Felix Dunning, who “knew the role better than anyone else” volunteered to stand in for Fredenburgh.
Nottingham Playhouse’s in-house company and stage manager Jane Eliot-Webb then stepped in to Dunning’s job to cue the show.
Dunning said: “It’s most stage managers worst nightmare, but we had to keep the curtain up and I had so much support from a brilliant cast, director and all at the Playhouse plus the most supportive and engaged audience. Once it got started it was really quite fun.
“I’m thrilled to know the actor is back today though. It’s also been so lovely to wake up to all these messages from old friends and colleagues who have heard the news.”
— Adam Penford (@AdamPenford) March 5, 2020
The venue’s artistic director Adam Penford said: “Everyone at Nottingham Playhouse is so grateful to Felix for volunteering to keep the curtain up last night.
“The audience were thrilled with his performance and he received a huge standing ovation.
“Hats off to our company and stage manager too, Jane Eliot-Webb, who stepped in to cue the show so smoothly.
“All productions hinge on the backstage team who work in shadows, it was wonderful to see them stepping into the spotlight last night and receiving the recognition they deserve.”
The show is expected to return to normal for its three remaining shows this evening and tomorrow (March 7).