Mum pays for young family to rewatch a play after stares of others forced them out


A kind-hearted mum has paid for a young family to see a theater performance for the second time after stares from others in the audience forced them to leave during intermission.

Emily Burke, 32, was devastated to see Noor Stevens and her three children leave Beauty and the Beast at the Empire of Sunderland early due to the stares they received from people sitting around them.

Noor, 35, said her eight-year-old daughter Scarlett sang and danced with the show and her four-year-old son Declan opened a pop bottle which exploded.

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Emily, from Bishop Auckland, County Durham, was so sad to see Noor’s children, including six-year-old Harriett, miss the end of the show on Friday that she made a Facebook post offering to pay for them they see her again.

Through the power of social media, the mother-of-two was able to reunite with the Sunderland family and has generously bought front row tickets for them to return next month.

Noor Stevens’ three children Scarlett, eight, Harriett, six, and Declan, four

Emily, who is mum to Lorcan, four, and Orla, two, was attending the show in Sunderland with her mum after receiving tickets as a Christmas present from her children.

The project manager said: “There were a lot of little girls in Belle outfits and it was quite cute. I noticed a little girl a few rows ahead of us really coming into the show. She was dancing and singing, c was absolutely gorgeous.

“But I could see the looks people give you when your kids don’t act the way they want them to. I noticed a young couple sitting next to them get up and leave or move around.

“During intermission I saw the mother get up and take them out, she had her coat on. The little boy was sobbing. I thought they were leaving because of the way everyone was looking at them.

“I could hear people screaming about it. A grown man walked by and said ‘thanks the fuck they’re gone.’ she also paid for the tickets.

“It was awful. I just felt really depressed for the kids that they weren’t going to see the rest of the show and upset with how people were reacting.

“My mum said ‘I loved it so much, it breaks my heart that the little boy and the little girls couldn’t see the end, it was magical!'”

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Emily Burke with her two children
Emily Burke with her two children

Emily has previously raised money for charity by shaving her hair and sleeping rough on the streets of London.

After the show, she decided to try to find the family, whom she had never met, by posting a message on Facebook.

In her message, she said: “I can only apologize to this family for the rudeness.

“I personally would like to pay for her and those kids to revisit the show, they deserve to feel like I saw it through to the end (maybe a matinee with less grumpy adults!)”

Emily said her online post had been shared around 2,000 times and it took her less than two days to find Noor.

She said: “I woke up to a few messages saying I think she’s the lady and she was. It was amazing, I didn’t think I would find her!

“I don’t think she believed me. She said ‘you don’t have to do that.’ find “.

“It was just the right thing to do.

“My tickets were free because it was a present from the kids. I’d like to think someone else would have done the same.”

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Noor Stevens with his youngest daughter Harriett
Noor Stevens with his youngest daughter Harriett

Noor said she spent £220 on four £55 tickets because her children loved the film and had already enjoyed visiting the pantomime.

On the night of the show, Scarlett and Harriett were dressed in yellow Belle dresses and her son wore a shirt and bow tie.

Noor, who works in home care, said: “Scarlett really loves to dance.

“The lady next to her changed seats and I felt bad because the tickets were so expensive.

“After the drink exploded, I thought the people in front wouldn’t be happy.

“I was just thinking about ticket prices.

“That’s the kind of person I am, I always put others first.”

Noor said a few people she knew saw Emily’s post on Facebook and forwarded it to her.

She has now praised Emily for her generosity.

Noor said: “I was really shocked, I thought how beautiful it was.

“It was nice of him to do something like that.

“When I spoke to her, she seemed like a lovely person.

“She wanted us to see the magic part at the end of the show.

“I want to say a big thank you to Emily.”


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