We Will Rock You
This was our first trip into London for a theater show. We really had no clue what We Will Rock You was about other than it had music from Queen, which we love. Somehow we thought it was more of a concert but turns out it was a musical play.
Thirty minutes into the play, we had to evacuate the theater which happened in a rather orderly fashion and no one stampeded out or knocked other people down. Killer Queen was singing a song when two people dressed in black just walked onto the stage, tapped her from behind and helped her down off her perch. I thought it was something that wasn’t supposed to be happening and I was right. As she stops singing, mid song, and climbs down, she says, “We’ll be back.” Then the curtains come down including a big curtain on the front that says “Safety Curtain” which I have never seen in a theater before. People in the audience sat a minute and sort of waiting for an announcement. Then people on the left hand side of the theater sort of all got up en-mass and started for the exits so all of us on the right side did too. We got into the aisle and still just sort of stood there when some theater employees came to the fire exits and started yelling, “Everyone out of the theater now! This way! Out of the theater now!” Everyone did start moving quickly now but still orderly and no panic. There is no smoke or anything happening that we can see.
Standing outside in an alley, we just were waiting to see what was going to happen and if we should head for the subway and go home or give it some more time. We heard sirens and saw an ambulance come racing towards the theater and then a fire truck. We started moving towards the front of the theater so we could see what was happened. It was very crowded so by the time we got to the front, the emergency personnel had either gone elsewhere or never stopped there anyway. Another 10 minutes and people started going back into the theater. We went back to our seats and were told another 15 minutes and the play would begin again.
So the night grew a bit longer than expected as we were allowed back into the theater later and the play continued on from the interruption point. An explanation later was that a disgruntled employee had pulled the fire alarm. We were also told that the disgruntled employee was known and would be dealt with in an appropriate manner. All that aside, the play was a delightful little future scenario where music is gone and one dreamer must find Freddy Mercury’s guitar where he hid it. I was a bit unprepared to hear women sing some of Freddy’s songs but it was good and their voices were superb. It was definitely a British tongue in cheek and the audience loved it when one line was something like “the old dominion theater held these shows for 150 years and only had to evacuate the theater once!” Our favorite part though was still the end though when they just sang Queen’s songs without any added dialog. It was an enjoyable evening.