A theatre show has come under fire for using a pack of wolves during a bizarre and heart-stopping live performance.

Video shared on social media shows the terrifying moment about 30 of the wolves run from the stage and sprint towards the actors.

They dash down to the seating area where spectators watch on in shock before going between the aisles as if searching for the performers.

At one point, a wolf pounces on an actor who is seemingly running back onto the stage.

The scene, which has gone viral on Weibo, the Chinese equivalent of Twitter, was from the popular musical show "The Legend of Camel Bell" in Xi'an of Shaanxi Province in central China.

Viewers raised safety concerns as they feared the wolves could potentially harm the audience.

Some were shocked when they learned the animals were wolves not huskies.

One commented: "Do they not notice the danger? What happens if they attack the audience and who will be responsible for that?"

Another said: "The animals look just like the huskies! I can't tell the difference really and to be honest, they could have used the dogs instead."

A third wrote: "I watched that show years ago! I remember a child sitting next to me was shocked and cried when the wolves came running close."

A spokesperson for Huaxia Cultural Tourism confirmed that the animals used on the show are domesticated Caspian Sea wolves.

He said: "We brought them in from a foreign country and have been training them for a few generations.

"We have a team of professional trainers to give guidance to the actors. The wolves are not as vicious as the ones in the wild.

"It [The training] is all legal and we have certifications to prove, there's no accident happened in the past three years."

He also said the staff have put up protection nets between the stage and seating area, so the wolves can't reach the audience.

"The Legend of Camel Bell" tells the history of the Silk Road and the wolves depict the dangerous journey China's ancient camel troops would take to Central Asia for trade and commerce during the Tang dynasty.

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