Sir Ian McKellen taken to hospital after falling from theatre stage mid-show

Audience members said they heard the 85-year-old actor cry out in pain.

Daisy Jackson Daisy Jackson - 18th June 2024

Sir Ian McKellen has had to be taken to hospital after a dramatic fall from the stage last night.

The Burnley-born icon had been performing a fight scene at the Noel Coward Theatre when he lost his footing and reportedly fell into the orchestra pit.

Audience members said they heard the 85-year-old actor cry out in pain and the theatre was swiftly evacuated.

Sir Ian, who has been starring as John Falstaff in Player Kings, was taken to hospital following the dramatic fall, where he’s in ‘good spirits’ and expected to ‘make a full recovery’.

The theatre has taken the decision to cancel this evening’s performance of Player Kings ‘so Ian can rest’.


The production, adapted from Shakespeare’s Henry IV, previewed here in Manchester back in March at the Opera House theatre.

It’s since moved down to London where Sir Ian has been performing to sold-out theatre audiences.


One audience member from last night said: “Just witnessed an awful accident with Sir Ian McKellen tripping off the stage in London. He seems badly hurt. We are all in shock and tears.”

Another posted on X: “As patrons & producers of theatre, it was devastating to be at Player Kings tonight when Sir Ian McKellen fell off the stage during a battle scene. Still in shock. Sending love & light Sir Ian. Thinking of the cast, crew & audience members who experienced this traumatic event.”

Someone else said: “Just witnessed Ian Mckellan severely injure himself after falling off stage at Noel Coward Theatre. Sir Ian could be heard screaming in pain as ushers rushed to his aid. Show cancelled as he is treated by ambulance crews. Wish him all the best.”


One witness shared on Instagram: “Middle of the show. Sir Ian falls off the stage. I’m stunned right now. Never, in a hundred shows, seen anything like it. I’m hoping he is OK.”

A spokesperson for the Noel Coward theatre said: “Thank you to our audience and the general public for their well wishes following lan’s fall during this evening’s performance of Player Kings.

“Following a scan, the brilliant NHS team have assured us that he will make a speedy and full recovery and lan is in good spirits.

“The production has made the decision to cancel the performance on Tuesday 18 June so lan can rest. Those affected will be contacted by their point of purchase as soon as possible tomorrow.

“Thank you to doctors Rachel and Lee who were on hand in the audience and to all the venue staff for their support.”

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Featured image: Player Kings publicity picture