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The illusionist Siegfried Fischbacher — the last surviving member of the magic show “Siegfried & Roy” — has died at the age of 81. According to his publicist, Fischbacher passed away in Las Vegas on Jan. 13, 2021, due to pancreatic cancer.
His business partner, Roy Horn, passed away last year due to complications from COVID-19. Horn was 75-years old when he died in a Las Vegas hospital.
Fischbacher was born in Rosenheim, Germany on June 13, 1939. Before becoming a famous magician, he worked as a steward on an ocean liner.
The illusionist began performing magic under the stage name Delmare while working on the ship TS Bremen. He met Horn while working for the ocean liner in 1957 — when he became Horn’s assistant for an impromptu magic show. They were both fired when they brought a live cheetah aboard the ship.
The duo began performing with white lions in Las Vegas in 1967. They soon began adding white tigers to their acts. In 1990, they began performing at the Mirage Resort and Casino. Fischbacher and Horn’s performed their magic show six times a week — 44 weeks per year.
That is until Horn was injured by a tiger on Oct. 3, 2003, thus ending his career. The tiger mauled the magician in front of Fischbacher and 1,500 fans. One of the handlers, Chris Lawrence, cited Horn as the reason for the attack. According to the official story, Horn had suffered a stroke and it is believed the tiger was only trying to protect the magician.
Fischbacher and Horn never blamed the tiger for acting on instincts. Lawrence also alleged that Horn had been spending less time with Montecore — the 400-pound white tiger that attacked Horn. Montecore passed away in 2014.
In 2004, Fichnacher and Horn’s magic show became the basis for a short-lived TV series “Father of the Pride.” Throughout his career, Fischbacher was seen in several movies. These films include “Vegas Vacation,” “Ocean’s Eleven,” and “Show Boy.” He was the first magician to become a billionaire.
It has been reported that the magician’s funeral service will be private. However, there will be a public memorial in the future.
Written by Sheena Robertson
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