Chinese teenager dies after stage collapses during dance audition

Kinling Lo
Chinese teenager dies after stage collapses during dance audition

A 13-year-old was killed and 14 other children injured when a stage collapsed during an audition on Saturday evening in southeast China.

Over a hundred children and dozens of adults were standing on the stage at the Golden Daffodil theatre in Zhangzhou before the centre part of the stage suddenly collapsed, bringing dozens of people down with it.

The children had been auditioning for a dancing display known as the Lucky Peacock.

A one minute-long video capturing the accident was shown by state broadcaster CCTV on Sunday morning, showing some children sitting on the front of the stage, while others were still walking to get into position for a group photo.

“Children don’t move, don’t move!” a female voice said through a microphone as children and adults screamed when the stage fell, the video showed.

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Many adults rushed to the stage, while children standing at the back grabbed each other and moved away from the hole in the stage.

One child was pronounced dead at the scene despite emergency rescue efforts.

Three other children suffered serious injuries and were sent to the hospital immediately, according to a notice released by the local government on Sunday. CCTV reported that in total 14 children had been injured.

One Zhangzhou government official said the accident was caused by too many people going onto the stage for the group photo, according to Shanghai-based news portal Thepaper.cn.

However, the organiser of the event, identified only by the surname Yuan, said the stage collapsed because it was “worn out and old,” according to mnw.cn, a Fujian news portal.

Yuan and a person in charge of other companies involved in the event have since been detained.

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