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Tokyo Disney Resort to close Cirque Du Soleil show due to earthquake's impact

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The Tokyo Disney Resort has announced that Zed, its resident Cirque Du Soleil show, will close permanently on December 31, 2011.

The Oriental Land Company, which operates the resort, has taken the decision to remove the show due to the economic impact of the earthquake that struck Japan in March. This has led to a sharp drop in attendance at Zed performances, causing it to make heavy losses.

The Cirque Du Soleil show is housed in a 2,000-seat theater, which cost some $178 million to build. The Tokyo Disney Resort will retain the theater, but has not yet decided what use it will be put to.

Zed debuted on October 1, 2008, and features Cirque Du Soleil's usual array of acrobatic stunts. The Canadian performing arts troupe has put on more than 1,000 performances of the show, and it has been seen by more than 1 million guests.

The Tokyo Disney Resort's finances have been badly hit by the earthquake, with net profits falling to 22.91 billion yen ($285 million) for its last fiscal year after it was forced to close both of the resort's theme parks for over a month. Around 20,000 guests spent the night at Tokyo Disneyland and Tokyo DisneySea on March 11 after the earthquake caused massive disruption to public transport systems.

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