Wesley Daniel, an actor who sustained second-degree burns during a Lyric Opera dress rehearsal earlier this month will return as an understudy for one of the stilt walkers he was cast to play, according to a written statement released by the opera house.
Daniel, 24, had stepped in to play a fire-spitting stilt walker as part of the fair scene in Act Three of Richard Wagner's masterpiece Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg. But during a dress rehearsal on Feb. 4, the actor’s face, which was covered by a mask, was engulfed in flames as he attempted the stunt. He suffered second-degree burns but no damage to his lungs or airway.
“I feel terrific and am looking forward to putting this whole incident behind me and getting back on stage,” Daniel said in the statement. “I am truly grateful for all the good wishes I’ve received over the past few weeks, but the coverage my accident generated was, quite frankly, overwhelming and I just want to get back to work with my colleagues.”
The statement said Daniel will move to other projects and auditions following the completion of Die Meistersinger, which ends next Sunday.
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating to determine whether any federal safety rules were broken at the time of the accident.
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