By Tuan Nguyen and Tom Liddy
MIDTOWN — Crew members at Daniel Radcliffe's Broadway Show, "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying," were stunned Thursday after a carpenter died backstage of an apparent drug overdose.
The 29-year-old stagehand was found locked in a back bathroom of the legendary theater, where the show starring Radcliffe and John Larroquette was playing, around 8 p.m. Wednesday, staffers said.
"Everybody was shocked," one stunned staffer, who had worked at the theater, at 302 W. 45th St., for 25 years, said Thursday. "It was very emotional."
The unidentified worker was rushed to Roosevelt Hospital, where he died of an apparent drug overdose, according to the New York Times.
The staffer, who did not want to be named, said that the stagehand was only working temporarily at the Hirschfeld.
"He came from another theater to work here on a one-week contract," the staffer said. "It was very unfortunate. He was young and very friendly to everybody."
The death, which came before the 100th performance of "How to Succeed," left Larroquette and Radcliffe shaken, according to witnesses.
According to the Times, two announcements about the show being delayed were made at 8:20 p.m. and then again a half hour later.
Then, around 9 p.m., an emotional Larroquette and Radcliffe took to the stage to announce that the show had been canceled, according to the paper.
"They said they debated it for a long time, and that there was a tragedy and they didn’t feel comfortable performing," audience member Barbara Germain, told the Times.
Police said the Medical Examiner will determine the cause of death. No criminailty was suspected in the incident.
"[Wednesday night's] performance was canceled due to the unfortunate and unexpected passing of a stagehand," said the show's production team in a statement.
"The incident was not caused by an accident related to the production. The cast, crew and theatre staff mourn the loss of this member of their theatrical family."
Despite the death, theatergoers lined up Thursday to buy tickets for that night's performance.
Most were unaware of what had happened the night before.