Given that it's one of the most iconic and award-winning musicals of all time and has been around for almost 30 years, most people are well aware that the musical Rent is about LGBTQ people and themes. Even if you know nothing else about the show, you probably know that, right?
Well count one British theatregoer among those who haven't been up on their musicals over the past few decades.
Upon realizing the show is "about gays" while attending a production at the Carriagework Theatre in Leeds, UK over the weekend, the patron stood up in the midst of the performance and stormed out of the theater, berating the front-of-the-house staff on their way.
The show's production company, Bite My Thumb, posted a blistering response to the patron on Twitter that has people cheering. See the tweet below.
Bite My Thumb wrote:
“...[A] single audience member picked up their coat, rose from their chair and left the auditorium. On exiting the individual turned to a member of the front of house team and declared ‘I DIDN’T REALISE THIS SHOW WAS ABOUT GAYS’."
“All the cast, creatives and backstage crew of the production were utterly disgusted to hear about this display of small minded ignorance."
"As a theatre company, we purposely chose Rent to give a voice to the LGBTQ+ community and educate on the horrors of the AIDS epidemic.”
Rent is a retelling of the 19th-century Puccini opera La Bohème that focuses on a group of seven 20-somethings struggling on New York City's Lower East Side during the 1990s while the HIV/AIDS epidemic was still running rampant. Four of the show's seven principal characters are LGBTQ, and given the times, they are also HIV-positive.
In the spirit of the show and a bid to turn the homophobic patron's bigotry into a positive, Bite My Thumb announced that it would donate a portion of that performance's profits to an LGBTQ+ organization, and thanked the patron for inspiring the move.
“So thank you to that close minded, out-dated person. Your appalling attitude now means an underfunded LGBTQ+ organisation will receive a donation it so desperately needs and will put to good use."
On Twitter, Bite My Thumb's response--and had a field day mocking the patron.
Hopefully this person learns to Google things before buying their tickets in the future. Or, you know, just stop being a bigot.