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Valitar performers rebuild after show canceled

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SAN DIEGO – After the producers of Valitar cancelled their horse show at Del Mar Fairgrounds due to low ticket sales, the performers were left to fend for themselves.

Producer Mark Remley cleared out 20 of the 40 horses and left town just days before the opening of the holiday spectacular.

Performers were not paid and the 20 remaining horses were left in their stalls with no plans for exercise or feeding.  That’s when Valitar’s director Sylvia Zerbini, who owns the remaining 20 horses, began creating a new show.

Sylvia Zerbini

“We have over 20 horses that we need to take care. We are talented people and we feel that instead of thinking about all the bad things that just happened to us, we have to take that energy and go forward,” Zerbini said.

The show has been renamed to Liberte and all the money will go support the cost of the horses and the performers, many of whom have no way to get home. They will perform at Del Mar December 7 – 9.  

“Many of them gave up a year’s worth of contract work in other places and now they’re all booked,” said family friend and interim business manager Linda Holst. “They’ll have to start over at square one so they are very displaced emotionally and physically.”

Lease agreements for the artists run out November 30.  Zerbini is creating the new show while trying to find housing for her performers.

“We are trying really hard to relocate the artist,” she said and acknowledged the famous generosity of San Diegans. “We have a lot of great people that are helping us find establishment around the area. Del Mar is letting us keep our horses here.”

But like all great performers, the show must go on. The new show based on donations will take place in a smaller arena with a smaller routines, but the beauty and grace of the performance will remain larger than life.

“We have to stay positive. We have so many things to think about with the animals and the performance and keeping the training up to speed,” she said. “If we start to think people are going to come or not come that will bring our energy and morale down, so we just have to really think positive.”

9 comments

  • Mia McKim

    I had wanted to attend the original show but had believed I was too late, I’m saddened by the circumstances but am happy at the performers resolve and the opportunity to see some of them perform! Where can I purchase tickets for liberte? My mothers birthday is the 8th and I would love to take her (as well as my friend and his mother;) as soon as tickets are available. I have two empty couches in my house in Oceanside! I know it’s not a permanent solution but we have the space and we’re not far from the track. Feel free to give me a call I there’s a need! (760) 470-0366

    • Michelle

      Mia, you're awesome! I just saw that there is a number given in the Del Mar Times for anyone who wants to help. It is (858) 212-6650. There is also mentioned a possiblity to help through Mary's Tack and Feed on Via de la Valle. They haven't posted the tickets for sale at the Fairgrounds website yet, but keep checking.

  • Horse Lover Too!

    I will buy tickets! What that producer did is criminal and animal neglect. Isn't he responsible if he sponsers these folks and their animals overseas?

  • More Info for all

    I know others who have had dealings with Tatyana and no one has come out ahead. Most, if not all were never paid for the services they performed. Very sad situation indeed. I support the efforts for the new show.

    • RSF Horse Rancher

      Never had a problem working with Remleys if you cannot afford your horses then sell them. or give them away. whats the deal with the high priced tickets for a benefit that only helps Sylvya and her personal horses what about other people like the 250000 people that are homeless or jobless in the U.S. Why does a California State Park facility get involved? I thought State was broke too !

      • Sleamhain

        High priced tickets? Are YOU high? I just paid over $350.00 for two adults and two kids to attend Cavalia – and that's the discounted price. I'm not complaining, mind you, the performance was superlative, but the ticket prices for 'Liberte' are a bargain! I have a feeling from your comment that you have an agenda, and that you may more than a 'working relationship' with the Remleys. Anyone who clears out in the middle of the night, leaving performers unpaid and animals in peril earns the opposite of respect. That was a loathsome, underhanded thing to do.

  • Not RSF

    Wow, RSF … looks like you "haves" stand together against the "have nots" … which is why the state and country are in such dire circumstances as it is. Too bad you people weren't around when they gave out hearts and integrity! Most people need to work to support themselves and their horses, while your ilk just sit back and gloat over your investment income. I bet you don't give a hoot about Horse Slaughter either. You and the Remleys are probably even serving horsemeat steaks at your kiss-butt parties!! Why don't you try to understand and show some compassion for the less fortunate. What a concept!

  • DMSALESGIRL

    As a proud member of the Del Mar community, The Clarion Del Mar Inn, is happy to be working with Linda Holst, Liberte volunteer, to provide food and accomodations for the Liberte performers, "former members of Valitar". After hearing about the unfortunate events with Valitar, General Manager, Thomas Mackey and his staff immediately stepped in and got involved offering complimentary room for all who were in need. http://www.cbs8.com/story/20233035/valitar-perfor

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