A performer at Russia's legendary Bolshoi Theatre was killed on Saturday in an accident on stage during an opera, the Moscow company said.

The theatre said the incident took place during a set change in Sadko, a 19th century opera by Russian composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov.

"The performance was immediately stopped and the audience was asked to leave," the theatre's press service told the Interfax news agency.

Moscow's Investigative Committee said in a statement it was probing the death of the 37-year-old male performer.

The committee did not reveal the name of the victim, but said he was injured and died before an ambulance arrived.

Citing a source, Interfax reported that the performer was crushed by a ramp during a set change.

The accident is not the first tragedy to strike Moscow's renowned theatre.

In 2013, a senior violinist died after falling into the orchestra pit.