Keira Knightley impresses on Broadway debut - despite disturbance from audience member

Keira Knightley has made her Broadway debut. The 30-year-old actress impressed critics and audience members with her performance on Thursday's opening night of Thérèse Raquin – despite an unwanted interruption just minutes into the play.

Keira, who welcomed daughter Edie in May, stars as the titular character in the production, which opened this week for a month of previews. She was on stage with co-star Gabriel Ebert when the disturbance took place. According to eye-witnesses, a young man in the mezzanine got up from his seat and made his way to the railing, from where he started shouting things at the stage.


Keira Knightley impressed on her Broadway debut - despite an disturbance from an audience member

Members of the audience were initially confused as to whether he was part of the play – but it soon became clear that his outburst was directed at Keira. The actress remained in character and ignored the man, prompting him to shout: "Five seconds is too long to wait for a response."

An usher then walked the man back to his seat and waited with him until security arrived. London-born Keira and Gabriel continued to act their parts – and it was not until security approached the man that the actors broke character.

Keira on stage with her Thérèse Raquin co-stars

As the man was being escorted out, he picked up a bouquet of flowers and threw them on to the stage, where they landed just a few feet from the actors. After a moment of silence, Gabriel, who plays Keira's husband Camille, walked over and kicked them into the wings, to applause from the audience.

The play is a stage adaptation of the French novel of the same name by Émile Zola. It tells the story of a young woman locked in a loveless marriage, who begins a passionate affair. Thérèse Raquin officially opens on Broadway at Studio 54 on Thursday 29 October.

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