Circus billionaire hosts space show
Saturday 10 October 2009
Canadian space tourist and circus billionaire Guy Laliberte mixed star power, science lectures, music and poetry with water, hosting a TV/Internet show from the International Space Station.
People from around the world tuned in via TV and the Internet on Friday the Cirque du Soleil founder, brought his crusade to preserve the world's water resources down to Earth from his host's chair on the International Space Station.
Former US vice president Al Gore, U2 and Shakira were among the parade of entertainers and activists that participated back on Earth with acts performed in 14 cities on five continents.
The show was aimed at raising awareness for Laliberte's One Drop Foundation, which seeks to draw attention to the growing shortage of clean water.
One of the most anticipated segments of the evening was a chat between Laliberte and Bono, who was performing with U2 at a concert in Tampa, Florida.
"You are the first clown in space and we think it's a great idea for you to give us your perspective on our little planet while you're not on our little planet and instead looking down on it," Bono said. "How do we look from there, how does our little planet look, Guy?"
Laliberte replied that "planet Earth looks so great but also so fragile."
The event combined live and taped segments. Production costs for the multilingual show are estimated at between $6m (£3.8m) and $10m (£6.3m) — which is on top of the $35m (£22.1m) Laliberte paid to become Canada's first space tourist.
It was seen on the Internet beginning at midnight, UK time, through the One Drop Foundation's Web site: http:// www.onedrop.org.
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