SAN FRANCISCO -- Tragedy struck under the big top Tuesday as a crew member with Cirque du Soleil's Luzia was seriously injured during rehearsal and then died from his injuries. It forced the cancellation of the show.
The theatrical company released a statement later that night: It is with immense sadness that we report a fatal accident that occurred on November 29, during the pre-set of the show LUZIA in San Francisco. One of our employees, a technician on the show, was struck by a lift and passed away from his injuries. We cannot confirm our employee's identity at this time as his family has yet to be reached. We are currently gathering more information about this tragic accident and will update you with more details as soon as we are in a position to do so.
Cirque du Soleil staff tried to quickly spread the word to ticket holders that the 8 p.m. show was canceled.
"I'm in shock," said Lynde Meyers, a ticket holder. "I can't drive. I can't believe that somebody in the show is injured."
The visual spectacle arrived in San Francisco earlier this month and runs through the end of January.
Some crew members said that cancelling a show is rare. Fans were disappointed, but understanding.
"We always come to the shows," said another attendee, Mike Ortiz. "Good shows. That's too bad, I hope everything turns out."
Cirque du Soleil Luzia technician dies in accident before San Francisco show