|Estimated value:||€100 million|
|Country of origin:||Germany|
|Source of Wealth:||magician|
Siegfried Fischbacher and Roy Uwe Ludwig Horn better known as “Siegfried and Roy” are two magicians of German origin who conquered the world with their performances. Her white tiger show at the Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas was one of the city’s biggest crowd pullers for over a decade, contributing to her boom.
In 2002 – a year before the show was canceled due to an accident – the two magicians were making around $52 million a year.
Siegfried Fischbacher comes from Rosenheim, where he still has family today. He started doing magic at the age of eight. One motivation was to cheer up his father, who had returned from Soviet captivity severely traumatized.
After graduating from school, Siegfried initially trained as a weaver. He then moved to Lake Garda, where he worked as a waiter. He used the opportunity to demonstrate his first magic tricks in front of the guests.
In 1959 Siegfried was hired on the cruise ship TS Bremen, where he also worked as a waiter and magician.
All that is known about Roy’s youth is that he attended elementary school in Blexen and that his father was also an alcoholic. At the age of only 13 he finished his school career and was hired as a page at the TS Bremen.
After Siegfried and Roy met on the TS Bremen in 1960, they soon performed together in front of the passengers. A special feature of their show was the appearance of the cheetah “Chico”, which the two took on board despite the captain’s initial concerns.
The shows at TS Bremen were so successful that the first stage appearances soon followed. In 1963 they made guest appearances at the famous Hansa Variety Theater. In 1964 they were seen at the Astoria Theater in Bremen. Due to the great success, they ended their engagement at the TS Bremen this year and started a big European tour.
The highlight of the tour was a performance in Monte Carlo, where they delighted Princess Grace – aka Grace Kelly. The performance brought them international attention.
In 1966, Siegfried and Roy performed in Las Vegas for the first time. The show at the Tropicana was so popular that influential casino owner Frank Rosenthal got them an engagement at the Stardust Hotel in Las Vegas in 1970.
There, the two shone in the show “Lido de Paris” for two years, which earned them the “Best Show of the Year” award. After a brief stint at “Americana” in Puerto Rico, they returned to Las Vegas in 1974, where they caused a sensation on the show “Hallelujah Hollywood” at the MGM Grand Hotel.
From 1978 to 1981, Siegfried and Roy were again part of the show “Lido de Paris” at the Stardust Hotel, albeit on better terms. So this time the show was advertised with her name on the billboard. Her contract also made her one of the highest-paid magicians in Las Vegas history.
In the years 1981 to 1988, Siegfried and Roy performed for the first time in their own show at the “New Frontier” hotel in Las Vegas. Under the title “Beyond Belief” they offered the audience unique magic tricks up until then.
In 1988-89 they were preparing a new show for the Mirage Hotel in Las Vegas, for which they raked in a record $57.5 million a year.
The show ran until the accident in 2003 when Roy was bitten by a tiger during the performance. The serious injuries that Roy sustained ended the career of the legendary magician duo.
Irrespective of the record fee, the show in the Mirage Hotel also represents the artistic high point of Siegfried and Roy’s development. Many of the breathtaking tricks were only made possible by the fact that the theater was specially built for the two’s show. The production cost was $50 million and the annual cost was $25 million. The show’s soundtrack was composed by Michael Jackson. The show’s trademark was 27 white tigers, who shared the stage with Siegfried and Roy.
“The reports of my death at the time were completely exaggerated. I think I still look damn good as a corpse.” (Roy on false death notices after tiger incident)
“If a tiger attacks you, you’re done. Then you are dead.” (Roy in reference to the “accident”)
In addition to the Mirage Hotel, there is still the “Secret Garden” opened by Siegried and Roy, a large outdoor enclosure in which white tigers can be admired
The white tiger “Mantacore” involved in the “accident” died of natural causes in 2014. Putting him to sleep was out of the question for Roy, simply because the accident was preceded by a stroke. The tiger felt this and grabbed his neck to bring him to safety
|Estimated value:||€100 million|