Nicole Kidman ‘swatted’ by opera audience member in standing ovation dispute

8 February 2021, 14:45 | Updated: 9 February 2021, 11:02

Sydney Opera House audience member ‘swats’ Nicole Kidman with his program in standing ovation dispute
Sydney Opera House audience member ‘swats’ Nicole Kidman with his program in standing ovation dispute. Picture: Instagram/Getty

By Maddy Shaw Roberts

Hollywood star Nicole Kidman found herself the victim of an audience member’s bewildering rage at Sydney Opera House over the weekend.

After completing mandatory quarantine, actor Nicole Kidman recently enjoyed a night out at the opera with her mum and husband in Sydney, where live performances can now take place again with social distancing and mask-wearing.

As Opera Australia’s acclaimed production of Franz Lehár’s The Merry Widow drew to a close at Sydney Opera House, as is custom at most live seated performances, many people in the audience rose to their feet.

Kidman and her husband, singer Keith Urban, joined their fellow opera lovers in a standing ovation for the night’s star performers.

But one man, sitting behind the couple, grew irritated with their enthusiasm and told them to sit back down, according to Sydney Morning Herald’s ‘Sydney Private’ column.

Wanting to show his appreciation for the cast, Urban refused and carried on standing and clapping, prompting the anonymous audience member to ‘swat’ Academy Award-winning Kidman with his program, in his fervent desire for her to return to her seat.

Read more: Tourists who paid £1,400 to watch Andrea Bocelli complain he sang a ‘boring’ opera >

The Hollywood star enjoyed a night at the opera in Sydney
The Hollywood star enjoyed a night at the opera in Sydney. Picture: Instagram/Nicole Kidman

Urban called over their bodyguards to escort Nicole and her mum out of the venue, and away from the aggrieved Lehár lover.

The opera house’s security also intervened, and police were soon summoned.

“Police have been told a 53-year-old man and a 67-year-old man were both attending the entertainment centre when an argument broke out. Officers spoke to both men and no further action was taken,” NSW Police said in a statement.

After the incident was all cleared up, Nicole and Keith stayed behind at the venue so they could greet the star singers backstage.

Opera Australia boss, Lyndon Terracini, led the couple through to the stage door, where they took a photo with Australian-Italian tenor Virgilio Marino.

“Thank you Opera Australia! So beautiful to be back at the theatre,” Kidman posted in a message to her Instagram Stories, adding: “Making my mumma happy at The Merry Widow.”

Never a dull night at the opera...

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