Poison lead singer Bret Michaels is suing Tony Award Productions and CBS, alleging that producers were to blame for the on-stage injury he incurred during the filming of the 2009 Tony Awards in New York City.
According to Michaels, producers failed to give him information regarding how to safely exit the stage following his performance. Michaels received brain injuries six months after the initial incident, which occurred when he was hit in the head by a large sign that descended from the ceiling during the taping of Poison’s performance.
Prior to performing, Michaels asked the show’s producers if there were any specific instructions as to where he may or may not stand during any portion of the performance. Court documents indicate that the producers told him to simply exit out the back of the stage following the performance.
However, after Michaels and his band mates performed one of their hits with help from the cast of Rock of Ages, a hanging sign fell and hit Michaels, splitting his lip and fracturing his nose. According to his suit, Michaels was never made aware of the placement of the sign or of the dangers it posed.
Six months later, Michaels nearly died from a subarachnoid hemorrhage, defined as bleeding underneath the fragile tissue that covers the brain. His lawsuit claims that his on-stage injuries were the cause of the eventual brain injury.
The suit also alleges that producers refused to correct the situation and went on to blame him for the incident, stating that Michaels “missed his mark.” Michaels is suing for unspecified damages, and both CBS and representatives from the Tonys have yet to comment on the matter.
Source: Reuters, “Bret Michaels sues CBS, Tonys over on-stage mishap,” Mark Cina, 25 March 2011