Italian Actor Raphael Schumacher Brain Dead After Onstage Hanging Scene Goes Terribly Wrong: Report

Raphael Schumacher
Raphael Schumacher  Courtesy Raphael Schumacher/Facebook

Raphael Schumacher was declared brain dead on Friday, February 5, after a suicide scene in a stage performance went terribly wrong on Saturday, January 30, according to reports.

The Italian actor, 27, was performing in an experimental theater production at Pisa's Teatro Lux when the incident occurred, CNN reports. A female medical school graduate in the audience ran up to help Schumacher when she realized that he was actually being strangled while acting out a hanging scene. She and another person loosened the noose and Schumacher was transported to Cisanello Hospital.

The scene was allegedly written into the show last-minute, according to Italian newspaper II Giorno. At the time of the incident, Schumacher was wearing a cover over his face.

"The original monologue included a fake gunshot, but he eventually decided for the hanging — without telling us," directors of the theater company told the paper, via CNN.

Schumacher underwent a six-hour procedure on Thursday after he failed to respond to treatments. "The family and the prosecutor's office have both authorized that his organs be donated, but their removal will be subject to a medical assessment to be performed in the course of the night," the hospital said in a statement on Thursday, via BBC.

Schumacher's mother and close friends have since reportedly ruled out suggestions that he took his own life. CNN reports that four people are now under investigation for manslaughter.

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