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|Laliberté at the $25,000 World Poker Tour No Limit Hold’em Championship|
|Birthday/Birthplace||(1959-09-02) September 2, 1959
Quebec City, Quebec, Canada
|Profession(s)||Founder of Cirque du Soleil|
|Net worth||$1.3 billion (June 2016)|
|Wife/Husband||Rizia Moreira (ex de facto spouse)|
|Partner(s)||Claudia Barilla (girlfriend)|
Guy Laliberté (OC, Order of Quebec, September 2, 1959) is an entrepreneur, philanthropist, poker player, space tourist and French-Canadian executive director. He is the founder and current executive director of Cirque du Soleil (Cirque du Soleil). Beginning as an accordionist, walker on stilts and fire-swallows, Laliberté would go on to found his own circus, which is a set of all the circus styles of the world. In 2006, taking 95% of the shares of billionaire Cirque Du Soleil, the Entrepreneur Ernst & amp; Young of the year.
Guy Laliberté was born into a middle class family in Quebec City, Canada, in 1959. He is the son of a nurse and a Public Relations Executive of Alcan Inc. At the age of sixteen, he had already decided that he would study a career related to the performing arts, after having produced several school events. After graduating, he started playing with a folk music group called “La Gueule du loup”, playing the accordion and the harmonica. His work in folk music introduced him to street performances.
After leaving university, Laliberté went on a tour of Europe as a folk musician and street artist, where he also learned the art of swallowing fire. On his return to Quebec, in 1979, he got a job at a hydroelectric plant in James Bay, but was fired just three days later, due to a strike by the company. He relied on his unemployment insurance and decided not to look for another job. Instead, he joined the group of stilt-walkers “Les Échassiers de Baie-Saint-Paul”, led by Gilles Ste-Croix. Shortly after, Laliberté and Ste-Croix, organized a summer fair in Baie Saint Paul, Quebec, with the help of the future colleague of Laliberté, Daniel Gauthier.
This festival, called “La Fête Foraine” was held for the first time in July 1982 in various parts of Quebec. Ironically, the event was canceled in its host city shortly after it started, due to complaints from some citizens. Laliberté directed and produced the fair for the following years, achieving a moderate financial success. It was during 1983 when the government of Quebec granted 1.5 million dollars to him to present a production the following year, as part of the 450th anniversary of the celebration of the discovery of Canada by the French explorer Jaques Cartier. Laliberté called his creation “Le Grand Tour du Cirque du Soleil.” The celebration turned out to be a decisive economic success. Although the first tour of Cirque du Soleil reported a profit of only 40 thousand dollars, its success allowed him to sign contracts for 1.5 million dollars.
Until 1987, Cirque du Soleil had never left Canada. Then, Laliberté decided to risk everything; He decided to take his circus to the Los Angeles Arts Festival. The transfer completely exhausted the production savings. If the presentation had not been successful, the circus would not have had enough money to return to Quebec. About this, Laliberté says “I bet everything to that night, if we failed, there would be no money to go home.”
Guy Laliberte Net Worth – $1.8 Billion
More Facts about Guy Laliberte
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