Actors injured after balcony fall during Romeo and Juliet performance

Actor and actress are seriously injured after falling from a balcony as they performed Romeo and Juliet in Hungary

  • The pair both required surgery for serious injuries but are in a stable condition 

Two actors have been seriously injured after a balcony fall during a production of Romeo and Juliet in Hungary.

Júlia Szász, 28, playing Juliet, and Otto Lajos Horváth, 60, playing her father, Lord Capulet, are in a serious but stable condition in hospital following Friday’s accident.

Paramedics treated the actor and actress after they fell behind the scenery from a height during the second act of the performance in the capital, Budapest.

Their injuries were so serious that both Szász and Horváth required surgery. The exact details were not shared.

National Theatre director Attila Vidnyánszky submitted his resignation on Monday morning, ‘acknowledging his responsibility… as a result of the accident’.

Hungarian culture minister, János Csák, has since dismissed the suggestion the director should step down.

In a statement shared on Tuesday, the National Theatre said Vidnyánszky and Csák visited the actors at the Traumatology Clinic of Semmelweis University today.

‘According to the doctors, the condition of the two injured artists, Júlia Szász and Ottó Lajos Horváth, is improving.’

Júlia Szász (left), pictured during a performance of Romeo and Juliet, was seriously injured with her on-stage father (not pictured) Otto Lajos Horváth

Image from the National Theatre in Hungary shows a production of Romeo and Juliet

In a statement on Friday, November 10, Vidnyánszky said: ‘… Our Romeo and Juliet performance on Friday was interrupted during the second act due to the accident of Júlia Szász and Ottó Lajos Horváth.

‘The paramedics who arrived in a short time gave the two artists professional care on the spot and then transported them to the hospital. 

‘They are in good condition. For the sake of peace of mind, we ask the staff of the press not to contact them with their questions for the time being.’

Vidnyánszky confirmed an investigation was underway to look into the ‘circumstances’ surrounding the accident.

He added: ‘We wish our two excellent actors and colleagues a speedy recovery and look forward to their return to the theatre.’

Vidnyánszky has been in the top role for ten years, an appointment that was due to be wrapped up this year.

His posting was extended a further five years, until 2028, earlier this year.

János Csák, the culture minister, also shared well-wishes on Instagram on Monday.

In a post, he shared a picture of himself apparently consulting with doctors at the clinic.

He said: ‘I was informed about the condition of two actors who had an accident at the National Theatre at the Traumatology Clinic of Semmelweis University, where Prof. Dr. Béla Merkely, rector and Dr. Tamás Bodzay, head of the Traumatology Clinic received us.

‘The condition of Júlia Szász and Ottó Lajos Horváth is constantly improving thanks to the professional and high-quality medical care. 

‘The Ministry provides immediate emergency assistance to both artists during this difficult time.

‘I wish a speedy recovery and quick recovery to Julia Szász and Lajos Otto Horváth!’ 

‘I wish a speedy recovery and quick recovery to Julia Szász and Lajos Otto Horváth!’ said the culture minister, pictured third from the left

Júlia Szász is an actress with credits in a number of acclaimed Hungarian series including A besúgó (2022) and Csak színház és más semmi (2016 – ).

She also appeared in the romantic comedy Neither with You (2019).

Otto Lajos Horváth has a decorated film acting career spanning more than three decades. 

Horváth has played a broad ranges of roles on stage, too, performing in plays and adaptations of Shakespeare, Gogol, Dostoevsky, Euripides and Gogol among others at top Hungarian theatres. 

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