The Brussels-based promoter/agency was declared bankrupt on 20 December, leaving the future of its festivals unclear
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The global entertainment leader has announced the acquisition of VStar Entertainment Group, in a bid to further expand its audience to people of all ages
By Molly Long on 09 Jul 2018
In a bid to further expand its audience base to even the youngest of viewers, global entertainment group Cirque du Soleil Entertainment has acquired VStar Entertainment Group, best known for its popular children- and family-oriented shows. The deal, announced last Thursday (5 July), will see the Minnesota-based company, as well as their Florida-based circus arts subsidiary Cirque Dreams, added to Cirque du Soleil’s growing portfolio.
VStar Entertainment Group has operated for close to four decades, with over 39,000 performances in more than 40 countries to its name. It has largely made its name through its family-oriented productions, showcasing popular children’s brands from Nickelodeon and Spin Master with huge success over the years. Of its most popular shows, PAW Patrol Live! Race to the Rescue stands a clear winner. In 2017 alone, the show toured 250 cities in 18 countries, grossing an average of $394,877.
The move is hoped to be mutually beneficial for all those involved. President and CEO of Cirque du Soleil Entertainment, Daniel Lamarre, comments: “VStar Entertainment Group has a proven track record and recognised expertise in small theatrical production, which complements Cirque du Soleil’s expertise in large-scale production and global touring.
“We continue to look for ways to expand and diversify our portfolio with new forms of entertainment and new brands”
“We firmly believe the knowledge transfer will help us develop our own capabilities in this type of entertainment and therefore, contribute to growing our footprint in the live entertainment production industry.”
This knowledge transfer will also be welcomed by Cirque Dreams, VStar’s subsidiary circus arts division. Founded by Broadway director Neil Goldberg, Cirque Dreams produces and operates tours and shows in theatres and tourist venues. On the acquisition, Goldberg says: “I have always admired the creative forces behind Cirque du Soleil and could not wish for a better partner to continue developing Cirque Dreams.”
Speaking further about this new direction for Cirque du Soleil Entertainment, Lamarre explained that whilst circus arts will always remain at the heart of the outfit, expanding into new horizons is a crucial part of the company’s future. He says: “We continue to look for ways to expand and diversify our portfolio with new forms of entertainment and new brands, reaching new audiences and expanding our own creative and production capabilities.”
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