Punches Thrown At Sunderland Theatre Show

3 April 2012, 11:59 | Updated: 30 March 2016, 13:50

Police were called after punches were thrown during a Sunderland performance of the hit West End show Chicago.

Five people sitting near the stage at the Sunderland Empire were thrown out following a brawl which coincided with a courtroom scene in the popular musical.

It was a case of "the show must go on'' for the actors - including EastEnder Stefan Booth and Tupele Dorgu from Coronation Street - who carried on amid the chaos.

The scrap happened on Saturday night, which was the last performance of the show at the Empire. Chicago is on a nationwide tour having fared well in the West End.

A Northumbria Police spokesman said:
"Police received a report at 9.45pm on Saturday, March 31 of a fight at the Sunderland Empire involving two women.

Officers attended the scene and spoke to two women. No complaints were made and no police action was taken.''

Empire general manager Ben Phillips said the fight was not drink-fuelled and involved a woman and her partner on one side and a woman, her daughter and another person on the other.

He believed the couple asked the trio to be quiet as they had been talking throughout the show.

He told the Sunderland Echo newspaper: "From that, punches were thrown. But the show carried on.''