Saturday night’s (Feb. 16) shows at New World Stages in New York City were evacuated and have been canceled due to multiple manhole fires on the theater’s West 50th Street block. Everyone who was at the theater is safe, a representative for New World Stages confirms to Billboard.
“All patrons, casts, crews and staff were evacuated as a precaution and performances were then cancelled. Thankfully, no one was hurt,” the rep writes.
At 8:52 p.m. local time, the FDNY’s official alert system on Twitter wrote, “MAN 7-5 311 W 50 ST, MULTIPLE MANHOLE FIRES.”
Video footage from the scene posted on social media shows a blaze from a manhole just outside New World Stages, located at 340 West 50th Street, where several performances were scheduled to take place at the off-Broadway complex.
One attendee posted on Facebook: “As we were entering the building, there was a big boom. No idea what it was, but they kept letting people in. Right when the show was supposed to start, they announced they had to evacuate the theater. So now we’re outside with the other 4 shows that are performed in the same theater,” later updating, “All shows in the building cancelled.”
“No show tonight,” The Play That Goes Wrong director Matt DiCarlo also reported. “Everyone is safe and out of the building!”
The Citizen safety network app shared another clip of the fire on Twitter, reporting “police are blocking off traffic on W 50th St from 8th Ave to 9th Ave.”
Oh crap the underground part of New World Stages is on fire and the flames are coming out a manhole on the street pic.twitter.com/33M4DDXdbG
— ———- (@DiscreetLatino) February 17, 2019
(Columbus Circle, Manhattan) Heavy Manhole Fire — Police are blocking off traffic on W 50th St from 8th Ave to 9th Ave. Expect travel delays. Updates and more video here: https://t.co/PBN56ldceS pic.twitter.com/hYC7aeC6G1
— Citizen NYC (@CitizenApp_NYC) February 17, 2019