Sometimes, during a live theater production, things go wrong. It’s bound to happen every once in a while, and when it does, the actors on stage must deal with the circumstances the best they can. Last week, veteran actor Tom Hanks found himself in that exact situation.
It’s quite well known throughout Hollywood that veteran actor Tom Hanks is always a constant professional. Last Wednesday, a live audience experienced his poise, grace and incredible improv skills during a performance of the play Henry IV.
During the performance, an audience member fell ill during the second act and required medical attention. While crew members attended to the sick audience member and waited for an ambulance and paramedics to arrive, the audience began to grow restless after a 20-minute delay. Thinking quickly on his feet, Hanks sprung into action continuing to entertain the audience and never once breaking character.
In order to keep the audience engaged, Hanks delivered nearly five minutes of improv which even included inviting a woman on stage with him. If anyone tried to leave the theater, Hanks quickly called them out calling them, “scurvy rogues who stood up from their seats” and an “insult to all actors and to Shakespeare himself.”
The performance was really quite impressive and, of course, it was all captured on video which you can watch below. The best news of all is that the sick audience member made a full recovery and was released from the hospital later that day.
Check out the video of Tom Hanks showing off his improv skills below. Hanks is currently starring with his wife Rita Wilson in Henry IV at the Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles. The play runs Tuesdays through Sundays through July 1st.