Siegfried & Roy's Siegfried Fischbacher dies at 81

Christian Holub
·1 min read

Alain BENAINOUS/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

Siegfried & Roy are no more. Roy Horn, one half of the Las Vegas magician duo that was well known for incorporating large exotic cats into their show, died from COVID-19 complications last May, and now Siegfried Fischbacher died Wednesday night of pancreatic cancer, according to the New York Times. Fischbacher was 81.

"The world has lost one of the greats of magic, but I have lost my best friend," Fischbacher said in a statement after Horn's death last year. "From the moment we met, I knew Roy and I, together, would change the world. There could be no Siegfried without Roy, and no Roy without Siegfried."

Fischbacher was born in Germany on June 13, 1939. He became interested in magic from an early age, and eventually found work performing on a cruise ship, where he met the younger Horn and asked him to assist. The two began performing as a duo (and were romantic partners as well), moving between cruise lines until being recruited to Las Vegas by Tony Azzie in 1967.

Together the two created Siegfried & Roy at the Mirage Resort and Casino, which from 1990-2003 was seen as one of the most popular shows in Las Vegas. The production came to a tragic and infamous end on Oct. 3, 2003, when Horn was mauled on stage by a white tiger (it was also his birthday). Horn suffered complications from the injury for years, and the duo officially retired from show business in 2010 — but not before producing a short-lived animated sitcom called Father of the Pride depicting the lives of the white lions in their act.

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