Cirque du Soleil Founder Guy Laliberté to Launch Hanai World NFT

Credit: Rich Fury/Invision/AP

Guy Laliberté, the Canadian businessman and co-founder of Cirque du Soleil, is delving into the realm of NFTs and the metaverse with a new project called Hanai World.

The project aims to bring storytellers working in music, theater, dance, and other art forms into the virtual experience. The website describes “Phygital” life is as a “set of new interactions between art, technology and real-life human connections.”

The website also puts out a call to action for artists to participate in “the making of tomorrow’s culture.” Although details remain unclear about exactly how artists can do that, it appears it will be through some kind of mix of digital and physical experiences and performances.

The project appears to have 2 NFT types:

  • Kikika’I Egg. These eggs will hatch “mythical creatures” into Hanai World.
  • Frooog Egg. These NFTs are described as an invitation to “play” and be part of the community. They appear to serve as a sort of membership card.

The website invites people to become the first Hanai World nomads and membership includes “phygital” events and creations, NFT education, VR/AR & “phygital” experiences, and other unique privileges and experiences.

Laliberté said that when he created Cirque du Soleil, he was creating experiences based on a traditional stage – the circus. Now with Hanai World, he is offering theatrical experiences on a contemporary platform – the metaverse.

He added that he hoped “to empower the young creative minds of this world and help them lead the journey of art with heart.”

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Before Cirque du Soleil was an international sensation selling more tickets than all Broadway shows combined, Laliberté was a fire-eater, stilt walker, and accordion player on the streets of Quebec.

Since then, the enigmatic performer turned businessman has been in the spotlight for being the first Canadian space tourist, where he accompanied the event with a webcast program that featured artistic performances on five different continents, including the International Space Station.

Of course, Laliberté isn’t the only entrepreneur/celebrity to get on board the NFT and metaverse bandwagons recently. Snoop Dogg, Paris Hilton, Stephen Colbert, and several major brands, corporations, and even banks have launched NFT and metaverse projects in 2022.

But with a creative leader like Laliberté backing it, it will be interesting to see what novelty Hanoi World can add to the metaverse. We’ll be looking out for what’s next.