New York

Met’s Latest Opera Is Totally En Fuego

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The opera is generally a peaceful place for sophisticated palates and voices that soar on the wings of angels. Except when it catches on fire.

A stage light malfunctioned during the performance at the Met on Monday night, filling the opera house with smoke and causing hundreds of audience members to grab their fur coats and fancy opera glasses (or, as reported, their walkers) and scurry/make their way slowly and arthritically for the hills.

Sixty or more firefighters rushed to the scene after an audience member called 911. But in a credit to stalwart performers everywhere, the show went on. As it should have.

Turns out, the stage light’s plastic coating had disintegrated, and “there was no reason to stop the performance,” an opera version of Hamlet. You know, the one in which he does not die of smoke inhalation.

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