Authorities say a Cirque du Soleil performer who fell during a performance in Tampa has died. That man has been identified as Yann Arnaud, who worked with Cirque Du Soleil for 15 years.
Audience members describe the fall as “traumatizing.” Julian Martinez was in the crowd and said he noticed Arnaud before the fall.
“I saw the performer visibly straining to hold onto the rope,” Martinez said. “I saw the two acrobats exchanging glances beforehand and I don’t know if one was trying to see if the other was OK.”
Martinez tells News Channel 8 as soon as the performer fell, he knew it wasn’t good.
“It was awful, you heard all the cries of the audience. There were children there and they were freaking out,” he said.
Medical staff tried to get to Arnaud as quickly as possible, but it was too late. He was pronounced dead at the hospital.
Martinez says he can’t stop thinking about what happened to Arnaud, and thinking – if he noticed the performer struggling to hold on, did the crew? And why wasn’t something done sooner?
“I wish someone would have noticed it and stepped in. It kind of colors our opinion of what is going on behind the scenes. What is the cost of our entertainment at that point?” asked Martinez.