Bret Michaels suing Tony Awards over 2009 injury

Bret Michaels, frontman for Poison, is suing the Tony Awards, alleging that his near-fatal April 2010 brain hemmorhage stemmed from an injury he sustained while performing on the June 2009 telecast. Michaels and the rest of his band had joined the cast of Best Musical nominee “Rock of Ages” to perform at Radio City Music Hall. As he exited the stage after finishing “Nothin’ But a Good Time,” Michaels was knocked off his feet by a piece of descending scenery resulting in a broken nose and three stitches to his lip (photo, right).

Michaels’ claims include negligence, civil battery, negligent misrepresentation and negligent interference with prospective economic advantage. Among those named in the action are Tony Awards Productions, CBS Entertainment, White Cherry Entertainment, Inc, Alan Wasser Associates LLC, Alan Wasser, Richard Kirshner, Glen Weiss and Allan Williams. The suit states that “One of the most common causes of this type of hemorrhage is head trauma, exactly like the one Michaels suffered at the hands of the Tony Awards.” His lawyers, Spillane Weingarten LLP, have posted the complete complaint here.

Among his allegations are that he, “was never told that the scenery piece would be descending or given any warning of the existence of the dangers it presented. Quite the opposite, Michaels specifically asked for instructions regarding how to exit after his performance and was just told to walk off the rear of the stage in what was ultimately the danger zone.” He was humiliated when CBS did not make use of the seven-second delay to prevent the incident from airing and after producers said that it was it was Michaels who had “missed his mark.”

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