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One killed, several injured in Paris theatre blast

© Photo: AFP

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2013-11-09

One man has died and several others have been injured after a pyrotechnic explosion went off at an auditorium in Paris on Friday evening. The cause of the blast is unknown.

Around 15 people were injured at a concert hall in Paris on Friday when a pyrotechnic explosion went off during a rehearsal for a musical show, with one man later dying in hospital.

The explosion happened at around 6pm at the 1960s-built Palais des Sports auditorium in the south of Paris.

The blast occurred near the stage when a pyrotechnic explosion went off for unknown reasons, leaving a wall and part of the ceiling collapsed.

“The walls shook,” a member of staff at the venue told AFP, adding that only cast and crew were on site at the time of the blast.

Two of those injured, most of whom were technicians setting up for the show, were rushed to hospital – one with injuries to the face and the other reportedly having suffered a cardiac arrest.

A police source said Saturday morning that the second man had died overnight.

About 100 firefighters and a dozen fire engines were deployed to the scene of the accident on Friday night, while Interior Minister Manuel Valls paid a brief visit to the theatre and spoke with the rescue workers.

France's Culture Minister Aurélie Filippetti has contacted one of the show's producers, Albert Cohen, to convey "a message of solidarity," her spokesperson said.

Some 3,000 ticket holders had been expected at the venue on Friday for a musical show, ‘1979, The Lovers of the Bastille,’ scheduled to start at 8.30pm.

An inquiry has been opened into the incident.

(FRANCE 24 with wires)

Date created : 2013-11-09