SOUTH FAYETTE TOWNSHIP, Pa. — A sudden activation of the sprinkler system over a high school theater’s main stage won’t stop the show from going on after all.
South Fayette High Schoolers were amid a final dress rehearsal for “Crazy for You” around 7 p.m. Thursday when the sprinklers suddenly went off.
Several fire departments were called as the building was safely evacuated. Firefighters thankfully did not find flames, despite a slight smoky smell that was determined to be the result of water hitting the stage lights.
“As we investigated more, we were able to get up there with the help of maintenance and we found that a cable from the curtain system had wrapped around the sprinkler head and activated it,” said Chief Bill Supan with the Oak Ridge Volunteer Fire Department.
Supan said that the stage and curtains faced water damage, but props were moved out of the way.
An updat posted by the school district on Friday stated that “district staff, restoration crews, and electricians have spent hours meticulously checking every part of the theatre, including the flooring, lighting, and audio system. We needed to wait for their assessment and recommendations before we could provide any official updates.”
In order to allow the student performers to complete a full dress rehearsal, Friday’s debut show was canceled, and those who purchased tickets will be refunded.
Instead, the big premiere will take place on Saturday. And, to make up for Friday’s canceled show, an additional performance was added on Sunday. Theatergoers now have two showtimes to choose between on Sunday.
“We cannot begin to express how proud we are of the ‘Crazy For You’ cast, crew, musicians, directors, and staff and how they handled this unexpected situation. We invite everyone to celebrate them by attending one of this weekend’s performances,” the district’s update read. It also went on to thank first responders and the restoration crews.
The high school moved to virtual learning on Friday as the damage was assessed. In-person learning will resume on Monday.
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