Arts

'Fiddler' Continues At Portland Center Stage After Accident

OPB | Oct. 30, 2013 5:03 p.m. | Updated: Nov. 4, 2013 6:07 a.m. | Portland

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Portland Center Stage is preparing for its final performances of “Fiddler On The Roof” and staffers say they’re confident an on-stage accident won’t repeat.

While Portland Center Stage chose to construct a steel rig for the character of Fruma-Sarah, productions of Fiddler used several methods to get the desired otherworldy feel for the character: stilts, harness and wire, even roller skates.

While Portland Center Stage chose to construct a steel rig for the character of Fruma-Sarah, productions of Fiddler used several methods to get the desired otherworldy feel for the character: stilts, harness and wire, even roller skates.

Portland Center Stage

The show includes a dream sequence in which actress Alicia Irving  plays a towering spectre who delivers a message to Tevye the milkman. The scene is played for laughs. But the audience got a real scare last Saturday night, when Irving toppled over in the eight-foot steel rig designed for the scene.

PCS production manager Chris Brislin explained, “Imagine a girdle with wheels is how we constructed this,” Brislin said. “The actress was built into the girdle as she goes across the stage. Everybody stumbles. That’s basically what it was — she leaned back a bit too far, gravity took over,” Brislin said.

The show stopped, staff called 911, and Irving was taken to a hospital for a full exam. The theater’s marketing director says doctors found no injuries and sent Irving home after two hours. She was back onstage the following afternoon, and will appear in the remaining dates.

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Editor’s Note: After our story was published, theater officials emailed to say the actress was no longer performing the scene fro the rig. Instead, she would do the scene on the stage floor.

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