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Shaw: ‘Actors have to work until they drop’

The 65 year old stunned theatre-goers when he fainted during a performance of The Country Girl in Shrewsbury, England.

The production was halted while he was given medical attention, with an understudy picking up the role, but Shaw refused to take a lengthy hiatus and went back to work after five days.

And the actor insists he felt compelled to battle through his illness because it’s too “complicated” to re-arrange a show’s schedule.

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He says, “These things happen. It would have knocked anyone down. In an ordinary job you wouldn’t be working if you felt that ill.

“Each time you take a part, it’s a completely different experience. If it’s a different part, it’s a different happening altogether.

“It would be really nice to say it’s all to do with dedication and so on. But it’s more to do with the fact that logistically it’s incredibly complicated if you drop out of a show.

“In this job you carry on until you drop, literally. These things happen on tour because it’s extremely demanding and stressful.”

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