LOCAL NEWS

Audience members removed from ‘Dracula’ ballet after altercation

Oct 26, 2023, 6:18 PM | Updated: 6:31 pm

SALT LAKE CITY — A fight broke out among audience members at Wednesday night’s production of the “Dracula” ballet at Capitol Theatre.

Ballet West executive director Michael Scolamiero said a couple was repeatedly asked by fellow patrons and ushers to lower their voice or stop talking, and they chose not to comply.

“There were patrons up in one of the boxes who were just not being respectful of those around them,” he said. “They were speaking loudly.”

He said ushers approached them during intermission. They said they were excited about the show and theatre staff thought nothing of it, until things escalated.

“In the second act, it erupted into a verbal altercation that was quite loud and it required house personnel to come to try and get them to calm the situation and get them to leave,” Scolamiero said.

Theater-goer Nate Rowley and his husband were sitting near the orchestra pit when they heard the fight break out.

“There was some profanity and definitely some type of altercation happening there,” Rowley said. “There was a woman that continued to keep talking and the audience kept shushing her.”

Rowley said the altercation became noticeable from his seat during a very solemn part of the performance. “At this moment in the ballet, the priest onstage came out with a cross, kind of a big moment in the act,” he said.

He said the situation escalated.

“I kept wondering, are we stopping, are we pausing? And they kept going,” he said. “Hats off to them. The music kept going, the dancers kept going. They didn’t seem them miss a beat.”

Scolamiero said that when the couple refused to leave after he approached them, the sheriff’s department was called.

“They were not allowed back in the show,” he said. “I’ve heard from many people around them that they reeked of alcohol.”

He said there was a tussle between one of the patrons who had been asked to leave and another sitting nearby.

“There was some pushing, there were no punches thrown or anything like that,” Scolamiero said.

Rowley said it’s sad the audience’s attention was stolen. “Is there enough social decay that we just start to see this more often, or is this a more isolated situation?” he asked.

Scolamiero said this kind of occurrence is not common. “The first time in my entire career as an arts executive that I’ve ever had anything like this happen,” he said.

He said that while he couldn’t comment on any discipline the couple might face, it’s highly unlikely they will return to another performance at Capitol Theatre.

Scolamiero said the incident shouldn’t deter any other guests from coming.

“If at any time we felt this was becoming unsafe for others around them, we would’ve stopped the show, but it didn’t reach that point,” he said.

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

emergency lights...

Mark Jones

Man taken into custody for alleged assaults at Cathedral of the Madeleine

A 31-year-old man was arrested Sunday after he allegedly began assaulting random people duing Sunday service at the Cathedral of the Madeleine.

2 hours ago

Taylorsville police said Sunday a 35-year-old man drowned in the swimming pool of an apartment comp...

Mark Jones

Man dies after drowning in swimming pool at Taylorsville apartment complex

Taylorsville police said a 35-year-old male drowned Sunday.

3 hours ago

FILE PHOTO...

Collin Leonard, KSL.com

Layton man charged with killing his father now charged with threatening puppy owner

A Layton man charged this month with brutally killing his father now faces an additional criminal charge after police say he threatened to kill a man selling puppies the day before his father was found dead.

4 hours ago

A paraglider was injured and taken to the hospital after crashing in Washington County on Sunday, M...

Mary Culbertson

Paraglider injured after crashing in Washington County

A paraglider was injured after crashing near Blue Springs Reservoir in Washington County.

9 hours ago

FILE - Police lights (Ray Boone, KSL TV)...

Mary Culbertson

Man shot, killed in Salt Lake City homicide

One man is dead after he was shot in a Glendale neighborhood. Police are investigating the shooting as a homicide.

12 hours ago

A large fire at a historic church building in downtown Salt Lake required a three-alarm response fr...

Mary Culbertson, Brianna Chavez and Shelby Lofton

Historic church burns in downtown Salt Lake City

A large fire at a historic church building, the Wells Ward meetinghouse, caused a four-alarm response from Salt Lake Fire Department.

14 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Electrician repairing ceiling fan with lamps indoors...

Lighting Design

Stay cool this summer with ceiling fans

When used correctly, ceiling fans help circulate cool and warm air. They can also help you save on utilities.

Side view at diverse group of children sitting in row at school classroom and using laptops...

PC Laptops

5 Internet Safety Tips for Kids

Read these tips about internet safety for kids so that your children can use this tool for learning and discovery in positive ways.

Women hold card for scanning key card to access Photocopier Security system concept...

Les Olson

Why Printer Security Should Be Top of Mind for Your Business

Connected printers have vulnerable endpoints that are an easy target for cyber thieves. Protect your business with these tips.

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Audience members removed from ‘Dracula’ ballet after altercation