October 13, 2009

Laliberte Describes His “˜Amazing Ride’

Following his recent trip into space, Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberte recalled the journey as "an amazing ride."

"Everything was an amazing ride and I would go back up there right now to do it again," Laliberte told reporters at a press conference outside Moscow.

Laliberte, 50, spent about $35 million to reserve his spot on the Soyuz.

He said the price of admission was "worth every penny and more," because he was able to raise awareness of his cause aimed at highlighting the situation of water on earth through the foundation One Drop.

During his 12-day mission aboard the International Space Station, he took part in a two-hour Webcast featuring former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, Irish rock group U2 and others.

The Webcast was aimed at gaining attention and support for the One Drop Foundation.

"I never denied this was a moment to create awareness toward the situation of water in the world, toward foundation One Drop," said Laliberte.

"I don't have 25 years, the world doesn't have 25 years to address the situation of water, so I think this was a great opportunity to combine a personal dream also, and having a greater benefit than just coming in space."

Laliberte returned to Earth Sunday, donning his red clown nose, alongside Russian cosmonaut Gennady Padalka and NASA astronaut Michael Barratt.

He told reporters that the return trip from space to earth was the ride of his lifetime.

"You start to see the sparks for the first time and there's all these colors, and it's an amazing spectacle," he said.


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