'Wiggly Friends' Stand In For Greg Page At Second Concert After His On-Stage Collapse
The show has gone on for The Wiggles as they took to the stage for a second night in Sydney, paying tribute to original Yellow Wiggle Greg Page who is recovering from a cardiac arrest.
Extended "wiggly friends" stood in for Page as the famed children's group performed to a sold-out crowd at the Castle Hill RS on Saturday to raise money for bushfire efforts.
Current Yellow Wiggle Emma Watkins, Red Wiggle Simon Pryce, Blue Wiggle Anthony Field plus his brothers Paul and John and a 'Yellow Elvis' all wore Page's signature colour.
"People couldn’t pick up a microphone for the first time without reassuring the whole crowd they were thinking of Greg and/or providing an update," Beth, a Wiggles fan who was in the audience, wrote on Twitter.
"That was a really moving concert. I know it ended up not quite being what I initially anticipated it to be, but it was all the more memorable for it."
The group personally thanked everyone who rushed to Page's aid after his collapse on Friday night, including their drummer Steve Pace, staff member Kimmy Antonelli and Grace Jones, a trained nurse who was in the audience.
Earlier on Saturday, The Wiggles shared a photo of Page from his hospital bed in a stable condition, noting he said "the show tonight should go on".
"Greg will not be performing tonight but we will have some wiggly friends jumping in to help out and make it a great show," the caption read.
The Wiggles were moments away from performing their final song of the night -- 'Hot Potato' -- on Friday when Page suddenly collapsed at the Castle Hill RSL in front of 800 fans.
It was later confirmed he had suffered a cardiac arrest, linked to what a paramedic later said was a "coronary occlusion, a blockage of a major blood vessel to the heart".
Page was rushed to hospital, with bandmate Anthony Field praising first responders, including the band's own drummer, for their help.
"CPR by Kimmy Antonelli and Steve Pace (our drummer ) help save Greg’s life. Please get up to speed with CPR, I definitely will," he tweeted on Saturday.
A paramedic later told media on Saturday that the team's quick thinking, plus nurse Grace Jones' assistance from the audience, saved Page's life.
"Had the team who were on stage not commenced CPR, had Grace not had the courage to use the defibrillator, then we may have been dealing with a different outcome," the paramedic said.
Page retired from the group in 2006, after being diagnosed with orthostatic intolerance -- a medical condition causing fatigue and blackouts.
"I'll miss being a part of The Wiggles very much, but this is the right decision because it will allow me to focus on managing my health," he said at the time.
Page was replaced by Sam Moran, but then returned to the group briefly in 2012. By 2013, three of the original Wiggles -- Page, Jeff Fatt and Murray Cook -- had decided to retire from the group and were replaced by new singers, leaving Anthony Field as the only founding member.
The group's original lineup had reformed for the two special bushfire relief concerts.