Las Vegas illusionist 'critical' after tiger attack

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The Independent US

A tiger attacked magician Roy Horn of the duo "Siegfried & Roy" during a performance last night, critically injuring the superstar illusionist.

The tiger lunged at Horn, who turned was celebrating his 59th birthday, in a show at the Mirage hotel-casino. Horn tried to beat him off with a microphone.

"The tiger went for his neck, then dragged him offstage. He looked like a rag doll," said Andy Cushman, aged 23 from New Jersey.

Mirage spokesman Alan Feldman said Horn, who underwent surgery early today, had "sustained a serious injury to the left side of his neck." Feldman said Horn was in surgery late Friday.

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 tiger was nine years old and was making his debut.

A short time after the attack, Siegfried Fisbacher appeared on stage and said the performance was cancelled.

The German-born pair go on stage six times a week, 44 weeks a year and have been performing in Las Vegas for more than 30 years. The illusionists signed a lifetime contract with the Mirage in 2001.