Lancashire entertainer Steve Royle who is appearing in the live shows of Phoenix Nights in Manchester has spoken of the cast’s shock after fellow actor Ted Robbins suddenly collapsed on stage on the opening night.
Steve, comedian, juggler, radio presenter and Evening Post columnist, says everyone is relieved to hear Ted is now doing well but reveals it is a real shame for the funnyman as he had been really looking forward to the Phoenix Nights live shows.
Speaking to the Evening Post, Steve said: “It is shocking about Ted. He has been so excited about it all too. Feel so sorry for the big man!
“We were all in total shock at first but are now just relieved he is ok.
“Ted is in all our thoughts every night and the response from the public is amazing.”
Ted Robbins, 59, actor, presenter and former Lancashire Evening Post columnist, who plays Den Perry in the comedy Phoenix Nights, suddenly collapsed while performing a solo section in the show’s first night prompting the curtains to be closed and the show to be cancelled at the Manchester Arena.
Ted’s sister Kate Robbins has revealed that Ted suffered a cardiac arrest and had been due to undergo routine heart surgery in a few weeks time after being left with a dodgy heart valve following rheumatic fever as a child.
A doctor and a paramedic from the audience performed a lifesaving procedure on Ted and he was taken to hospital where he is said to be doing well.
It has been reported the comedian has been sat up in his hospital bed and has thanked people for their get well messages and even joked that the health scare was his attempt to “upstage his co-stars”.
Ted is said to be in good spirits at Manchester’s Wythenshawe Hospital and is described as being stable.
He collapsed shortly after the interval on the first night of 15 planned dates. The second show on Sunday went ahead, as will the remainder of the dates.
Comedian Peter Kay led a standing ovation to Ted as Phoenix Nights returned at Manchester Arena on Sunday and sent his thoughts and prayers to Ted and his family.