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December 10, 2008
A production of “The Nutcracker” was halted after backstage smoke alarms were activated and water sprinklers engaged. But there wasn’t a blaze at the theatre.

Apparently, the young ballerinas were overzealous with the hairspray.

A witness says “Back in the dressing room, 20 girls had been furiously spraying their hair to get it to behave.” Over 1500 ticket-buyers were evacuated. 200 dancers in costumes waited in the street. Firefighter Rob Freeman said (quote) “A room with 20 girls in tu-tus spraying hairspray around can set off smoke alarms. The cloud of hairspray was thick. It’s like steam from a shower.”