An American ballet dancer leaped to the rescue of a man who fell onto the subway tracks in Manhattan on Saturday night (3 June).

Gray Davis, who performs with the American Ballet Theater, was travelling home from the Metropolitan Opera House where he had watched his ballerina wife perform in the Golden Cockerel ballet, when he spotted the man.

He did not hesitate to step in when he realised that the 58-year-old man was unconscious and was in danger.

He quickly jumped down and lifted him up onto the platform out of harm's way.

"At first I waited for somebody else to jump down there," Davis told the New York Times on Sunday (4 June). "People were screaming to get help. But nobody jumped down. So I jumped down."

After he had picked him up, others pulled the man onto the platform. Davis was still standing on the tracks when he heard a train approaching in the distance. He had to quickly jump up on the platform.

"I never realized how high it was," he said. "Luckily, I'm a ballet dancer, so I swung my leg up."

It was only after he had pulled the man up, that the danger sank in.

"It was really scary," he added. "I don't know if I had time to process it until I saw my wife coming down crying — then I realised it was scary.

Police said the incident took place at around 11.20pm (4.20am BST). Witnesses said that the man, who was homeless, was pushed onto the tracks by a woman who then fled on foot.