Money-losing 'Zed' will close at end of the year

Tokyo — Oriental Land, which operates Tokyo Disneyland, Tokyo DisneySea and other Disney properties in Japan, is ending its local partnership with Cirque du Soleil, which has been presenting “Zed” at the Tokyo Disney Resort since October 2008.

The Cirque’s theater will close by the end of the year.

Oriental Land cited a sharp dropoff in group visitors, which account for 40% of ticket sales, since the March 11 earthquake, tsunami and nuclear meltdown, putting it deep in the red.

The company originally planned to keep “Zed” going for 10 years but has bailed after three.

Oriental Land and Cirque spent $178 million building the 2,000-seat theater, which recorded its million visitor last July. The company said it will keep the theater but has not yet decided for what purpose.

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