A CENTER Stage performance of Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night" was canceled last week due to the illness of actress Mia Korf, who plays the lead role of Viola.
Rick Davis, associate artistic director at Center Stage, said the company does not have an understudy policy. "That decision is based on economics," he said.
"This kind of thing happens so rarely that it would not be feasible for us to incorporate such an arrangement. If some of the other actors in a play understudied the major roles and had to step in at the last minute, that would still create more holes in the play to fill in.
"I think the vast majority of regional theaters follow the same procedure as we do," Davis said.
According to Jackie Christian, a spokeswoman at Arena Stage in Washington, D.C., the theater -- which recently won nine Helen Hayes Awards -- does incorporate an understudy policy.
"Actors in the shows understudy the other roles," she said in a telephone conversation from her Washington, D.C. office. "When one of the actors gets sick or misses a train, the cast gets juggled around. It happened several times this season.
"The understudies are always listed in the program," she said.
Those who had tickets to the May 7 performance of "Twelfth Night" can get a refund or reschedule another performance. "Twelfth Night" closes Sunday. Ticket holders can also exchange their tickets for the Head Theatre's production of "The Mystery of Irma Vep," or opt for gift certificates to a play next season. For more information call the Center Stage Box Office at 332-0033.