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Suing for lack of a torch?

By johnboy - 8 January 2009 55

The Canberra Times has a piece on the legal efforts of Merrilin Lucy Robbins, 60, to sue everyone involved with the 2006 production of Gilbert and Sullivan’s “Trial by Jury” at the Belconnen Community Centre in 2006.

The problem is she fell down the stairs while working backstage:

    The statement of claim also says the singers were negligent by not providing Ms Robbins with a torch or a partner to prevent mishaps in the backstage area.

    The singers have yet to lodge a defence while the Government and the community centre both claim they are not liable for the alleged accident.

Because, you know, individuals are incapable of providing themselves with torches as needed.

What’s Your opinion?


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55 Responses to
Suing for lack of a torch?
Granny 3:27 pm 08 Jan 09

Well, it’s like ‘pardon me for building some stairs so you don’t have to pole vault off stage’ ….

peterh 3:15 pm 08 Jan 09

Granny said :

She’d probably sue me for not warning her that flames burn!

I don’t think she would want to ask for more flames…

Granny 3:14 pm 08 Jan 09

She’d probably sue me for not warning her that flames burn!

peterh 3:09 pm 08 Jan 09

Granny said :

I’d give her a torch alright and tell her where she could stick it!

*waits for flames*

as long as it wasn’t a flaming one…

Vic Bitterman 2:55 pm 08 Jan 09

Eddie Murpohy sprung to mind immediately reading this.

“Then my aunt Bunny would fall down the steps.
Almost every year.

Ever had a heavy set aunt fall down the steps?
Make a whole lotta f***ing noise !

It’s scary, too, ‘cos they’ll be
calling Jesus on the way down !

And aunts don’t like to fall straight
down the steps like a kid,

They be trying to break the fall
and hold it and stop the sh**.

And that’s what makes
the fall take a half hour then.

Real loud, like:

“Lord, Jesus Christ, help my lord,
please, Jesus, please !”

“Jesus, God, help, my lord, Jesus, help me I’m falling
down the steps oh lord Jesus Christ please !”

“My shoe !”

“Oh lord Jesus God help us !”

“I’m half way down now help my lord Jesus !”

“Lilian !”
“What is all that f***in’ noise ?!”

“Lilian !
The bi*ch is falling down the steps again !”

“Lilian ! Lilian !”
“What’s wrong, Bunny ?”

“I fell down the steps !”

“Bunny fell down the steps ! Bunny fell down the steps !”

Eddie, go get your aunt Bunny
something cool for her head !”

“What happened ?”
“Bunny fell down the steps !”

“Hey, Charlie ! Aunt Bunny fell down the steps !”

“Gus ! What the f*** is wrong with your wife ?”

“Why can’t she walk the fryer steps?
You come up every f***in’ year, Gus…”

“… and you burn down my motherf***er backyard
and your wife rips down the steps !”

“Why ? I work hard to get my place beautiful…”

“…and then the motherf***er come over
and rips the steps down !”

“Look at the motherf***er steps !
They’re f***ed up, Gus !”

“Why can’t she walk the steps ?
You know why she can’t walk the steps ?”

“‘cos she’s a fat hairy bi*ch !
That’s why !”

“That’s why, Gus !
And my children are afraid of your wife.”

Granny 2:04 pm 08 Jan 09

I’d give her a torch alright and tell her where she could stick it!

*waits for flames*

tylersmayhem 1:54 pm 08 Jan 09

You mean Jeebus didn’t save her? Maybe He pushed her instead.

Haha, loving your work as always WMC! 🙂 Cheers!

Granny 1:42 pm 08 Jan 09

neanderthalsis said :

The daft old trout has probably been watching too much Judge Judy and decided to trade her pride for a chance at some quick dollars in an out of court settlement.

Makes sense. She probably wasn’t using it anyway ….

Woody Mann-Caruso 1:38 pm 08 Jan 09

a clerical officer with the Uniting Church

You mean Jeebus didn’t save her? Maybe He pushed her instead.

neanderthalsis 1:36 pm 08 Jan 09

The daft old trout has probably been watching too much Judge Judy and decided to trade her pride for a chance at some quick dollars in an out of court settlement.

Granny 1:26 pm 08 Jan 09

Does the woman have no pride? I would be embarrassed to sue others for my own incompetence. It just makes it harder for those who are injured through no fault of their own.

neanderthalsis 1:17 pm 08 Jan 09

from the article:
It is further claimed that Ms Robbins, who had to take two weeks off from her job as a clerical officer with the Uniting Church, was not given instructions by the singers in how to hand out song sheets while climbing dimly lit backstage stairs.

And I thought it was us men that can’t multi-task…

If she needs instruction in how to hand out song sheets, there is something seriously wrong with her mental ability.

seekay 1:02 pm 08 Jan 09

Gilbert and Sullivan would have had fun with the likes of Ms Robbins.

She could be added to The Lord High Executioner’s “little list” if the same group of players ever stage The Mikado.

Ozhair 11:14 am 08 Jan 09

Hang on. The Belco Comm Theatre is a “black box” theatre. There aren’t any backstage stairs.

The only way this could happen is if the stairs were part of the set constructed by ACT Singers, and as far as I know, the Belco Comm Centre and ACT Gov have no input in the set construction.

However, these days most groups are very careful about things like handrails and backstage lighting. In fact if you use scaffolding as the core of your set construction, it has to be inspected before anyone in the cast can set foot on it.

This happened on opening night. I wonder if she brought up concerns about the stairs and lighting during the preceding tech runs?

I’ve performed on some dodgy sets in the past, pre-insurance-worries days of community theatre, and while I don’t have all the info on this case, I’d tend to agree with fnaah.

fnaah 11:03 am 08 Jan 09

Having crewed on a couple of shows as a lad, I have no sympathy for the “victim”.

Backstage is dark. If you can’t remember where the stairs are, you have no business being backstage during a performance.

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