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School's Sweeney Todd show canned

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 8/04/2016

An Auckland school has cancelled the rest of its run of the blood-spattering musical Sweeney Todd after two of its student actors ended up in hospital with neck cuts.

The 16-year-old boys were taken to Auckland Hospital after things went wrong on Wednesday night at Saint Kentigern College's production of Stephen Sondheim's blood-soaked 1979 Broadway musical.

The school postponed its Thursday production and has now announced it will also be cancelling its Friday and Saturday shows.

"We are disappointed at having to do this, but have decided that the musical should not proceed while an investigation into what happened continues," college head Stephen Cole said.

Mr Cole on Thursday said the students necks had been cut by a real razor covered in duct tape and foam that was being used as a prop.

He said the school was confident it had checked the blade was not sharp and had tested it multiple times with no issues.

It had been used to appear authentic, he said.

WorkSafe New Zealand was advised and was making inquiries.

The play, set in Victorian London, contains scenes where the characters sitting in a barber's chair have their throats slit with a cut-throat razor.

They are then dispatched through a trapdoor to be cut up into filling for meat pies.

Audience members on opening night have reported not seeing anything untoward happen on stage.

The incident happened just two days after the introduction of tough new rules came into force over workplace health and safety.

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