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The following is an archived video story. The text content of that video story is available below for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available.

Miami U Actors Improvise After Theater Floods

OXFORD, Ohio (Angela Ingram) -- Heavy rain floods out student actors at Miami University hours before their Sunday afternoon performance.

The 16 actor cast of "Rent" found the theater and set soaked by up to six inches of water.  As Angela Ingram reports the actors learned how to improvise on short notice.

Hours before show time Sunday a production manager found four to six inches of water in the theater.  Miami University students who are performing "Rent" started getting phone calls at home.   

And he said, So the theater's flooded.  And I was like, I'm sorry what? and he said, Yeah it's about three inches flooded.  I was like okay, so what are we doing?

Heavy rain caused flooding at Studio 88 Black Box Theater on the lower level of the building.
A check valve failed under the floor causing the sump pump to stop and the water had no place to go.

The choices were either to cancel the show which is what we immediately thought we needed to do, but we had a lot of students who had family coming in just to see it and the show was sold out for the remaining performances so we had nowhere to put them.  So if we didn't do something, they weren't going to see it all.
Instead of canceling the show the young actors, crew, and staff improvised.  They hauled musical instruments, props, and other equipment to a different theater and they performed a concert version of the play.

It was just one of those moments that reminded me why I do live theater.  You never know what's going to happen and you never know what's going to come your way, so you have to always be prepared.

Initial feelings of panic subsided and the young actors learned that true professionals keeps going, no matter what.

They knew who they were, who their characters were and they could really make an impact and tell a story  even though they didn't have their set.

VIDEO here



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