Actor dies after hanging scene goes wrong

  • 06/02/2016
Actor dies after hanging scene goes wrong

An Italian actor has been declared brain dead after being strangled on stage when a hanging scene went wrong in the central region of Tuscany.

The Teatro Lux in Pisa said in a statement it was closing for 10 days because "following the unthinkable tragedy ... we think it right to suspend all our activities, including shows".

Raphael Schumacher, a 27-year-old from northern Italy, had been performing a monologue on adolescent existential unhappiness that ended with a scene of simulated suicide by hanging, local media reported.

The incident occurred during a private performance on January 30, according to the local edition of national newspaper Corriere della Sera.

Schumacher clinically died on Thursday (local time) at the University Hospital of Pisa, where he had been lying in a coma since the incident last weekend, a hospital spokeswoman said on Friday.

Police were investigating two theatre directors and two technicians at the theatre for possible manslaughter, as they suspect that safety requirements were not adhered to during the performance, Corriere della Sera wrote.

It said Schumacher had chosen at the last moment to use a rope for the suicide scene rather than a pistol.