(Video Photo Credit: Greg Autry)
NEWHALL (CBSLA.com) — A performance of Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof was interrupted when someone in the audience shouted a gay slur, prompting one of the actors to jump off the stage and confront the heckler.
The performance was held at the Repertory East Playhouse in Newhall, where witnesses say an audience member began booing the actors, before shouting gay slurs.
One of the actors, John Lacy, then broke character, jumped off stage, and confronted the offender.
“It was sad, and it caught me by surprise, and once the anger set in, and I heard him say it a second time, I didn’t see what my options were,” Lacy said.
Lacy, who has been married for 20 years and has three sons, is a 26-year veteran actor, and was playing the role of the patriarchal Big Daddy during an emotional scene.
Lacy was reportedly fired from the production for jumping off the stage and confronting the heckler. The incident caused a number of cast members to leave the production, leading to the decision to pull the plug on the show.
The theater released a statement on their website:
“(We) would like to assure future audiences that disruptive behavior including disparaging remarks from audience, incidents of bullying or hate speech and racial, discriminatory or homophobic utterances will not be tolerated.”
Meanwhile, Lacy says that, if he were given the opportunity, he wouldn’t have done anything different under the circumstances.
“Loving your fellow man is what we’re here to do. I’d do it again.”