Jackman & Craig vs. Cell Phone

You’re sitting there in the theatre, suspension of disbelief in full force as you immerse yourself in the story being told onstage. Then in the darkness comes that familiar sound. A cell phone ring tone unceremoniously rips you out of the moment onstage, challenging the concentration of both the actors and audience. It is without a doubt the most frequently occurring audience faux pas at legitimate theatre. The earliest instance I can recall of an actor stopping a show because of a cell phone was when Brian Dennehy chastised an audience member during the run of Death of a Salesman. Even though cell phones are prohibited by law in NYC theatres, odds are you’re likely to hear one.

So last Wednesday, during a matinee of A Steady Rain, a rather intense two-hander starring Hugh Jackman and Daniel Craig, a cell phone rang. Not once, but twice. Rather than silence it, the person chose to let it ring lest he or she be found out. Each actor without breaking character (bravo!) broke the fourth wall to address the phone issue. Thankfully someone was upstairs committing another theatre-related crime videotaping the production. TMZ has the footage of what went down: