To Miss Alice, who will enjoy this story.
The Miracle Worker tells the story of Helen Keller, who was born deaf and blind until her teacher Anne Sullivan helped the child understand her surroundings through the power of touch. In one theater production in the Midwest, the actor playing the Doctor was discovered to have a drinking problem. But as his character was only in the first scene, the director took pity on him and cast him anyway.
At the start of the play, the Doctor is supposed to inform the Keller family that a fever has left their infant without the use of her eyes, ears or vocal chords. Unfortunately, on opening night, the actor drunkenly blurted, "Mr. and Mrs. Keller, I've got bad news. Your daughter is… dead".
The other actors were stunned. If Helen was dead, the play couldn't go on. Thinking quickly the actress playing Mrs. Keller ad-libbed, "I think we need a second opinion".
The curtain came down and the drunken actor was yanked off the stage. The stage manager put on the Doctor's white coat and took his place on stage. When the curtain went up again, the new Doctor declared, "Your baby is alive, but she will be deaf and blind for the rest of her life".
The actor playing Mr. Keller was so relieved to hear the correct lines that he clasped his hands together and cried: "Thank God!"