A THEATRE boss has condemned abusive audience members after his staff were allegedly "punched and spat on" in recent weeks. 

In a statement, Edinburgh Playhouse theatre director Colin Marr said he was "disgusted and angry" with the behaviour of some visitors, stressing that abuse of his staff was becoming a "regular occurence."

Marr went on to say there were people coming to the theatre who were singing, dancing and talking through shows, disturbing other people's experiences and, when staff get involved, becoming hostile.

He is now warning people if they choose to disrespect staff they will be asked to leave or the police will be called if necessary.

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The statement on Twitter said: "Enough is enough.

"I am disgusted and angry with the unacceptable audience behaviour that my team has had to endure in recent weeks.

"They have been verbally and physically assaulted by a small number of audience members while trying to do their job. Two weeks ago one of my staff was punched. This week one of them was pushed and spat on.

"This is becoming far too regular an occurrence – not just in our theatre but in venues across the UK.

"There is a very small minority of people who come to our theatre and choose to sing, dance and talk throughout the show in a manner that disturbs others. They either don’t know, or don’t care, how much this spoils their fellow audience members’ experience.

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"When one of my team asks them politely to stop they become verbally abusive and, in some cases, physical. This is not acceptable.

"I am asking that when you come to our venue that you are considerate towards your fellow audience members and our members of staff so that we can all enjoy the wonderful entertainment on the stage.

"Please be in no doubt that if you are abusive towards our staff you will be asked to leave, and if you are threatening, intimidating or physically abusive we will call the police and you will be banned from our theatre and all ATG Venues."