Ipswich Regent Theatre has said it is "deeply concerned" after a hate crime incident was reported during a performance. 

The UK and Ireland tour of Grease the Musical has been playing at the theatre, in St Helen's Street near the town centre, since Tuesday.

During a performance on Wednesday, a reported hate crime incident took place. 

Suffolk police said officers were investigating an allegation of racist abuse, with the force receiving the report on Thursday morning.

The theatre has issued a statement which reads: "We are deeply concerned to learn of the reported hate crime incident at the Regent Theatre Ipswich. 

Ipswich Star: Grease the Musical is at Ipswich Regent TheatreGrease the Musical is at Ipswich Regent Theatre (Image: Marc Brenner)

"We stand firmly against all forms of hatred and discrimination and are actively cooperating with the relevant authorities to ensure the matter is thoroughly investigated and appropriate measures are taken. 

"Identifying the individual involved presents a challenge as a lone voice in a dark auditorium is difficult to pinpoint.

"However, we strongly encourage anyone who experiences or witnesses any acts of hate to report them to us."

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The production of Grease has also spoken out about the incident, alleging racist abuse was directed towards the company. 

A statement from the production said: "The producers of Grease are extremely proud of the diversity of our company and we are deeply disturbed that racist abuse has been directed towards them. 

"We want to make this clear - we have zero tolerance for such behaviour and are truly appalled that this has happened.

"We stand with our company, especially those of the global majority, who bring immense talent and dedication to the stage every performance.

"There is no place for hate at Rydell High and any individuals who believe otherwise are not welcome."

Ipswich Regent Theatre confirmed it is working with local authorities about the incident.

A spokeswoman for Suffolk police said: "Police have received report of an incident of suspected hate crime at Ipswich's Regent Theatre.

"A member of the audience reportedly shouted racist comments during a matinee performance on Wednesday, May 22."

Enquiries into the incident are ongoing.