The performing arts firm Cirque du Soleil said on Sunday that a performer lost his life after falling during a Tampa, Florida, performance over the weekend when his hand slid off the double rings.
“While he was performing the aerial straps number, longtime aerialist, Yann Arnaud, fell onto the stage,” VOLTA from Cirque du Soleil posted a message on Twitter.
According to the report, the 38-year-old fell around 20 feet. According to the report, emergency operations were started, and Arnaud was brought to a hospital where he later passed away from his wounds early on Sunday.
“The entire Cirque du Soleil family is in shock and devastated by this tragedy,” the statement said. “Yann had been with us for over 15 years and was loved by all who had the chance to know him.”
Ben Maldonado, who was present at the tragic incident, spoke to the ABC affiliate in Tampa, WFTS:
“They were doing a dance routine on stage and they had these streamers coming down from the roof.”
“One of the guys lost his grip and fell from the streamer down to the floor. The other performers, everybody just stopped on stage and were just pretty much in shock like we were,” he told the television station.
Cirque du Soleil postponed the final two performances of the VOLTA tour in Tampa after the incident.
Although such mishaps are rare, a Cirque du Soleil acrobat died in 2013 after falling to her death during a performance in Las Vegas.
— Cirque du Soleil (@Cirque) March 18, 2018