As many of my readers know I have discussed the matter of safety in many blog posts.. Well this is a different take on safety. An artist leaping in to an audience from over 10 metre high lighting truss. Our focus has recently been on dangerous work practises and inferior or badly constructed staging. The area of performers taking risks and putting others in danger has not be talked about much. We recently in Britain An American rapper and slam poet, George Watsky, decided to climb up some convenient truss, the climb along some lighting truss and then leaped into the audience, not your normal stage dive this one was around 10 to 12 metres. He got away with minor injuries but one audience member received a broken arm. This happen at the Alexandra Palace as part of the Vans Warped Tour.
I found out about this event on our favourite social network, Facebook, and after a bit of research and reading a fair few comments it seems this guy has performed similar stunts. This strikes me as not only stupid but incredibly dangerous. Some people are calling this an accident, but no it is not, it was a deliberate act. Now Watsky has stated he was not under the influence of drugs or alcohol, but what possessed him to put his life and the lives of others in danger. Surely he is smart enough to actually realise the consequences of his actions. If you watch the video posted below, it seems to me that he knew what he was doing at the time. Also what were the crew around the stage thinking, letting access the truss. If what people say is true that he has done this sort of crazy stunt before. Why do they not keep an eye on him. I am sure the promoter had a mild heart attack when he saw this, the potential for law suits is immense. Did the artist think he was invincible? Surely as he looked down at the crowd before jumping it must have gone through his mind that it was a long way down and the human body is not designed to fall that distance and neither is a body designed to take the impact of an 80kg or so weight accelerating towards terminal velocity. Well we now need to take into account a performers action to safeguard audiences. Maybe the artist could be a suitable candidate for a Darwin Award.
Well it seems we must now write risk assessment for the artists as well as everything else involved with a production.
Below is video of the incident.