CHARLES GRAHAM - An act of integrity by Dame Helen

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CONGRATULATIONS to Dame Helen Mirren for playing merry hell with noisy protestors outside her theatre.

No deputising a flunky to deal with the well-intentioned but thoughtless folk wrecking a performance of The Audience at Soho’s Gielgud, she tore outside mid-play dressed as The Queen and unleashed a salvo of highly fruity Anglo-Saxon.

To their credit, the understandably shocked demonstrators she railed against immediately apologised and moved on.

But I love it when performers lose it with an inconsiderate public. The late and much lamented Richard Griffiths famously came out of character on stage to serve a verbal volley at a member of the audience whose mobile kept going off.

Some thesps and musicians have been known to walk off stage after audience interruptions ruined the magic of their performances.

People pay good money to watch plays and go to concerts. It’s only right that everyone respects that and that performers staunchly defend their territory.