Theatre

Rocketman’s Taron Egerton collapses on stage during first night of new play C**k

Josh Milton March 7, 2022
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Taron Egerton attends the EE British Academy Film Awards 2020

Taron Egerton attends the EE British Academy Film Awards 2020. (Samir Hussein/WireImage)

Taron Egerton has reassured fans that he’s “completely fine” after passing out on stage during the opening night of his new play, C**k.

The Rocketman star collapsed on stage at the Ambassadors Theatre in London on Saturday (5 March), towards the end of the play.

Co-star Jonathan Bailey rushed to Egerton’s side before a doctor in the audience came to his aid, according to the Independent and audience members.

The safety curtain was quickly lowered, and play director Marianne Elliott told audiences that Egerton was “absolutely fine” following a 40-minute break.

His understudy, Joel Harper-Jackson, stepped in and finished the remaining 15 minutes of the play.

Taron Egerton: ‘I’ll be back with a vengeance’

“As some of you may have heard, I passed out during the first performance of C**k last night,” Taron Egerton wrote in an Instagram story on Sunday.

“I am completely fine. Slightly sore neck and a bruised ego but I’m fine.”

Trying to put a “positive spin” on the incident, Egerton said that his body simply could not handle the “committed, electrifying performance” he delivered during the show’s opening night.

“That being said, apparently you’re meant to actually do the full show and not just three-quarters of it,” he joked, “so I’ll be back with a vengeance tomorrow night.”

Egerton thanked the theatre team and Harper-Jackson, an “amazing actor and a lovely person,” for helping him.

C**k, the tartly-named satirical drama written by Mike Bartlett, follows John (Bailey), a gay man who grapples with his sexuality after meeting and falling in love with a woman (Jade Anouka).

John’s relationship with his boyfriend (Egerton) is thrown into turmoil. The pair have long been happy and content together, but now John must weigh difficult decisions about his life.

Bailey has previously weighed into the often fraught debate of whether straight actors, such as Egerton, should be cast in queer roles. Egerton has previously played Elton John in his biopic, Rocketman, where he filmed “raw, electric” sex scenes with co-star Richard Madden.

“I think it shouldn’t matter at all what character people play, but of course, there is a narrative that’s very clear, that openly gay men aren’t playing straight in leading roles,” Bailey said in 2020 before adding: “Wouldn’t it be brilliant to see gay men play their own experience?”.

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