Andrew Dipper

Michael McIntyre walks off stage in Darlington

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Michael McIntyre walked off stage in Darlington tonight after an audience member in the front row persistently used her mobile phone during the show.

McIntyre was in Darlington performing a much-anticipated work-in-progress version of his new Happy & Glorious show at the town’s historic Civic Theatre.

A report by The Northern Echo‘s Joanna Morris said that McIntyre “received a warm welcome when he walked on stage, but there was some drama towards the end of the act when an angry McIntyre asked security to intervene over a woman in the front row who had been persistently using her mobile phone.”

McIntyre then told security to “sort it out” before walking off stage.

A few minutes later he returned to finish his set after staff spoke to the woman, as some members in the audience chanted for her removal.

The incident marred an otherwise historic night for the theatre, which recently netted £5m in restoration funding.

The grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund means plans to restore the Edwardian venue can now go ahead – with an overall £8m earmarked for the renovation.

Theatre director Lynda Winstanley told the Northern Echo that McIntyre’s appearance highlighted the quality of entertainment on offer at the theatre.

She said: “Just a week after the fantastic news on the HLF grant we have one of the biggest names in comedy performing a sell-out show – it just goes to show what a diverse and successful venue the Civic is.

“As we take forward the restoration work, audiences should look forward to seeing our programme of shows go from strength to strength.”

Michael McIntyre returns to the region with his Happy & Glorious tour in 2015 when he performs at Newcastle’s Metro Radio Arena.