Actress Rakie Ayola has spoken about the terrifying moment the roof of London’s Apollo Theatre collapsed while she was on stage in her role in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.
Rakie, known for roles in Holby City and Soldier Soldier, told Wales Online she was relieved that no-one had died in the accident.
The actress and her co-stars were 45 minutes into the performance when pieces of masonry began falling on audience members, filling the auditorium in Shaftesbury Avenue with thick dust.
There were seven people seriously injured and 81 others hurt in the incident. Police said a London bus was used to take the injured to hospital.
Witnesses said theatregoers first thought the roof collapse was part of the show before realising the seriousness of the situation.
“I’m all right and, like everyone, I am just very glad that everyone got out,” the Welsh star told the website.
“When a ceiling is falling on someone and they are sat in a chair there is not very much you can do. You suddenly realise that all you can do is watch. And that is not good.”
A spokesperson for Nimax Theatres, the company which owns the Apollo Theatre, described the incident as “shocking and upsetting”.
“Our thoughts are with the audience and staff who were in the theatre and their families,” said the representative.
“We’re very grateful to the emergency services for their tremendous work and to our staff who helped with the evacuation.
“We will continue to co-operate fully with the authorities to establish exactly what happened.”
Meanwhile Simon Stephens, the show playwright, posted on Twitter: “Thank you for your messages on this sad and strange night.”