Thirteen female opera singers were trapped for over an hour in an elevator in Kashihara Bunka Kaikan in Kashihara, Nara Prefecture, on Sunday, causing them to miss a scheduled opera performance.
According to the operators of the hall, the 13 singers squeezed into a small elevator with a maximum capacity of 11 people at around 12:40 p.m. The elevator then stopped moving between the second and third floors.
TV Asahi reported that the women spent over an hour trapped in the elevator, before eventually being freed by firefighters. Their performance had been scheduled to start at 1:15 p.m. The opera program was altered slightly and the performance went ahead without the missing singers.
Several of the women received medical treatment after being freed from the cramped conditions inside the elevator.
A spokesperson said that the women were wearing a variety of costumes and had a variety of builds, but that the hall did not yet have enough information to say beyond a doubt what caused the incident. Police say they will investigate why the elevator was allowed to move when it was over capacity.