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Firth’s theatre nightmare

The British actor has long suffered from stage fright and his nerves nearly led to disaster during a stint on the London stage 10 years ago, when he went outside to calm down and found himself stuck in the street.

He explains, “I locked myself in the toilet. I could not even remember my first line. I felt like I needed some air so went out of a fire door which then closed behind me, locking me out. I had to go around the front, through the audience, the very people I was terrified of. I could not even remember the pass code to get backstage. I had to beg to be let back in.

“I then had to go immediately on stage and perform. It was like a car crash but I managed to get to the end of the play and did not forget a line.”

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