You may not know her name, but you’ve probably seen her incredible performances at sporting events.
There’s a decent chance that if you’ve attended a pro basketball game in the past decade or so, you may have been treated to the talents of performer Rong Niu, known better by her stage name, Red Panda.
From atop a seven-foot-tall unicycle, Red Panda balances effortlessly while tossing objects on her head. The feats play very well in NBA arenas, where she’s been deemed the league’s most sought-after halftime act.
Sadly, the 44-year-old’s marathon touring of arenas to entertain has hit an unexpected delay after her custom unicycle — valued at $25,000 — was stolen. Without her bespoke vehicle, she’s had to use her inferior, less-cherished backup model. While it may suffice (for now), the video below shows that Red Panda’s act, and her very livelihood, is not the sort that permits much in the way of compromise.
According to KTVU (via Red Panda’s agent, Pat Figley), things aren’t going well for the fourth-generation acrobat on the unfamiliar secondary bike.
“She’s doing horribly,” Figley said. “She’s dropping balls. She’s just not used to it. The one that was stolen was custom built for her.”
Per reports, Red Panda’s unicycle was swiped from the SFO baggage claim with little in the way of leads. Fortunately, the millions of fans who have been entertained by Red Panda have been quick to signal-boost and try to assist in the reclamation of her prized possession.
Tiger fans around the world, please help us locate Red Panda’s unicycle! #LSUnicycle https://t.co/qHqlnElalo— LSU Basketball (@LSU Basketball) 1517433237
Help Red Panda, the greatest halftime act in history, find her unicycle. I've interviewed her. That bike is part of… https://t.co/ulXwUmDCB6— Myron Medcalf (@Myron Medcalf) 1517426187
According to her agent, the loss has left Red Panda “heartbroken.”
Let’s get her bike back so she can perform at the level that has amazed and delighted so many sports fans around the world.