Most people attend a Broadway show with the understanding that cellphones aren’t allowed, you should turn them off, and you won’t need them for the next couple of hours. Most, but not all. Not the guy who tried to plug his iPhone into the set (which is located on the actual stage, to which the entire audience is directing its attention) just before a recent performance of Hand to God.
Playbill.com reported on the incident, quoting a Facebook post from one Chris York:
At ‘Hand to God’ tonight I saw on audience member climb onto the stage right before the show and plug his cell phone into a (fake) electrical outlet on the set. ON. THE. SET. The crew had to stop the precook music, remove the cellphone, and make an announcement as to why you can’t do that. Truly. I am a quiet and reserved person and I took great joy in loudly heckling the idiot when he returned to take his phone back. Moron. Has theatre etiquette—heck, Common Sense—[really] fallen that far??
We don’t know the name of the person whose battery life trumped common courtesy, or what he was doing on his phone that was so important he couldn’t let it die, but we know his stunt didn’t even score him any extra juice. According to cast members, the outlet wasn’t real. It was a nonfunctional prop.
This is the beginning of a slippery slope that leads to “tweet seats” at movie theaters and a bunch of clowns talking loudly while you’re trying to concentrate very intently on Paul Blart: Mall Cop 2 (now in its 12th week). If we can’t keep our kids off Tinder long enough to sit through a Tony-nominated show—with puppets, for chrissake—we deserve whatever our malfunctioning robot replacements have in store for us.