Singer Jimmy Buffet ended his final concert in Sydney, Australia January 25th, 2011 by singing "It's been a lovely cruise, I'm sorry it's ended." Then, he tumbled off the stage, suffered a head injury, and had to be taken to a hospital by ambulance.
The sell-out crowd at the Hordern Pavilion were encouraged to exit the building as Buffett awaited the arrival of paramedics. From the stage, Buffett's Australian tour manager, Michael Chugg, asked fans to leave as security worked to clear the auditorium. Chugg then waited with the 64-year-old entertainer as he lay on the floor in front of the first row of seats.
Some 30 minutes after the fall, Buffett was taken to St. Vincent's Hospital in Darlinghurst. Tour staff declined to comment on Buffett's condition though the hospital has confirmed that he is stable.
An audience member, however, did describe seeing blood on the singer's head and said that Buffett was unconscious for at least five minutes. Other attendees expressed frustration over not being given any information about Buffett's condition as they were being ushered out.
In a statement to The Daily Telegraph, Dan Bateman, 30, said, “We were told to leave the premises. No one really wanted to leave because everyone was anxious to know if he survived the fall. Everyone was pretty horrified.
"We were in the tenth row and it looked like he did a massive face plant after his encore and pretty much didn't get up.' Bateman described seeing Buffett's head hit a metal strip during the fall, adding that it seemed to him that Buffett was about to jump off the stage to shake someone's hand.
A 10-second "a huge flash of light" at the end of the song “Lovely Cruise” is cited by yet another fan, Sean Fogarty, as seeming to disorient Buffett who was walking along the edge of the stage at the time. Fogarty also indicated he heard Buffett's head strike something metal as he fell to the floor.
Apparently, immediately after the incident, some of the security guards were seen arguing with a large man who had been at the front of the crowd.
The performance was added on to Buffett's itinerary after three nights at the Opera House sold out. In honor of Australia Day, Buffett apologized to the audience for not touring there for 20 years, promising to return with his Coral Reefer Band next year.
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