Canada is known for circus live entertainment around the globe.
Originally composed of 20 street performers in 1984, Cirque du Soleil completely reinvented circus arts, cleverly merging acrobatics with different circus art forms. By doing so, Cirque du Soleil becomes a world leader in live entertainment, and ultimately not only makes Canada a world leader in creative and innovation of live entertainment, but also build a pool of world-class circus artists and talents.
COVID has wreaked havoc the world of circus arts: two-third of circus artists are considering a career transition, giving up their craft and abandoning their identity as artists.
Our mission is to reinvent the circus artists’ casting marketplace, igniting new opportunities and embracing our culture as a community. Attractr is a centralized online marketplace that enables event booking and casting specifically for circus artists. Owning the marketplace and artist database in Canada by a Canada based company while promoting a pool of Canadian circus artists is vital to protect our culture and cumulative industrial knowledge to continue the leadership role in the entertainment sector around the globe.
Free contents are available on YouTube or an on-demand platform. However, none provide a sense of emotional connection between artists and audiences. Most of all, none allow circus artists to be compensated. Two out of three circus artists is considering a career transition. They not only need financial help; they also need to feel relevant and to stay in touch with their audiences and the creators. Even after the end of the COVID-19 pandemic, the landscape of the entertainment and theater production industry will never be the same. 90% of independent venues and clubs in North America are tearing down their stages, selling off theatrical equipment and cancelling performances.
The impact on circus artists and the world of performing arts is catastrophic. To survive, artists and creators must diversify revenue sources and equip themselves with new business tools and expertise to become solopreneurs during these challenging times. Building a supporting system for them is crucial for them to avoid wasting their great talents, or worse, giving up their craft and abandoning their identity as artists. Without artists there is no show. In the end, it’s our loss as a society.
In 2006, while at Cirque du Soleil, I initiated a new internal casting solution called the "virtual scout," an innovative online platform to scout the best artists from around the world online. It’s considered one of the top 3 innovations in the history of Cirque du Soleil by its CEO, Daniel Lamarre. Before the launch of “virtual scout”, it costs avg. $50,000 CAD and took 6-8 months to cast one artist from searching to onboarding. With the online platform, it quickly recouped the initial investment in less than six months by reducing the overhead cost significantly as well as increasing the efficiency in filtering the artists.
Attractr is our version of "Virtual scout 2.0", a revenue-generating global casting platform, democratizing publication of circus art, where they can attract new casting opportunities while building a sustainable revenue source by offering paid online live entertainment from anywhere they can perform, even at home.
We plan to explore new creative verticals in a near future.