LAS VEGAS — A tiger attacked magician Roy Horn of duo “Siegfried & Roy” during a Friday night performance, leaving the superstar illusionist in critical condition, authorities said.
An audience member at The Mirage hotel-casino said the tiger lunged at Horn, who tried to beat the tiger off with a microphone.
“The tiger went for his neck, then drug him offstage,” said Andy Cushman, a 23-year-old reporter from New Jersey. “He looked like a rag doll.”
Mirage spokesman Alan Feldman said Horn had a serious injury to the left side of his neck. Feldman said Horn, who turned 59 on Friday, was taken into surgery.
Horn was in critical condition at University Medical Center, said hospital spokeswoman Cheryl Persinger.
Cushman said Horn, the dark-haired member of the duo, appeared alone on stage with a white tiger about 45 minutes into the show, and told the audience the 9-year-old tiger was making his debut.
After the attack, Siegfried Fisbacher appeared on stage and said the performance was canceled, Cushman said.
The German-born pair perform six shows a week, 44 weeks per year and have been performing in Las Vegas for more than 30 years.
The illusionists, who put on one of the most well-known and expensive Las Vegas shows with their signature white tigers and lions, signed a lifetime contract with the Mirage in 2001.