Las Vegas Cirque du Soleil Performer Dies in Show Accident

The tragic fall marks the first time a Cirque du Soleil performer died in an onstage accident.

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Sarah Guyard-Guillot, left, and Sami Tiaumassi perform as "Forest People" during Cirque du Soleil's "Ka" at MGM Grand Resort in Las Vegas in 2008. Guyard-Guillot fell about 50 feet from the show's stage during a performance Saturday night.

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A 31-year-old Cirque du Soleil performer was pronounced dead Saturday night after an accident during the show "Ka" at MGM Grand in Las Vegas, the Las Vegas Sun reported Sunday.

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According to audience members, performer Sarah Guyard-Guillot fell some 50 feet from the left side of the set during the show's finale, appearing to have slipped from her safety wire. She could reportedly be heard groaning and screaming from the open pit she fell into beneath the performers before the show was halted and the audience was dismissed. The University Medical Center declared Guyard-Guillot dead from the accident later that evening.

Guyard-Guillot was an experienced performer, having more than 20 years of acrobatic experience.

MGM Resorts International released a statement Sunday afternoon about the tragedy:

"Our company is deeply saddened by the loss of one of the talented 'Ka' artists Saturday night. The thoughts and prayers of our employees are with the performer's family, the cast of 'Ka' and the entire Cirque family during this difficult time."

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Cirque du Soleil released a statement on its Facebook pageSunday, mourning Guyard-Guillot's death. It said the company has "been working with the appropriate authorities and have offered our full cooperation."

Guyard-Guillot's death marks the first time a Cirque du Soleil performer died due to an onstage accident in the company's 30-year history. It has seen lesser injuries, though, including a performer suffering a minor concussion during the "Michael Jackson One" show June 26 at the Mandalay Bay casino in Las Vegas.

According to the Cirque du Soleil statement, performances of "Ka" have been canceled until further notice.

 

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