Cirque du Soleil performer & mother of two dies in tragic stage accident (VIDEO)
A high-wire performer with Cirque du Soleil was killed after she fell 50 feet during a performance of Ka on Saturday night in Las Vegas.
The 31-year-old acrobat and mother of two, Sarah Guyard, was reportedly performing a battle scene at the highest point on the vertical wall when tragedy struck. The safety wire suspending her snapped, causing her to plummet to the pit below the stage.
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Initially, audience members seemed to think the fall was part of the show and that Guyard had landed on a net underneath the stage. But upon seeing the actors' horrified reactions, they quickly realized that wasn't the case. The rest of the cast was left "visibly upset" as one audience member described on Twitter, but crew members remained calm and were able to get the rest of the performers off the stage. Guyard died en route to the hospital.
Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberte issued a statement, saying, "I am heartbroken. I wish to extend my sincerest sympathies to the family. We are all completely devastated. We are reminded with great humility and respect how extraordinary our artists are each and every night. Our focus now is to support each other as a family."
Performances of the show have been canceled indefinitely.
What an absolutely horrific tragedy. I can't even begin to imagine what Guyard's loved ones must be going through right now, especially her poor kids. My heart breaks just thinking of them. Personally, I've always found watching those shows more anxiety-inducing than enjoyable and though these accidents are usually few and far in between, they only serve to remind everyone how dangerous those jobs really are. My thoughts and prayers go out to Guyard's family and to the rest of the cast.