The filing said that the move was "in response to huge disruption and forced show closures as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic".
"We know, because of the proposal on the table, that the Cirque is saved", CEO Daniel Lamarre said in a phone interview.
The entertainment company says the Quebec Superior Court will hear its application for bankruptcy protection on Tuesday, and it will seek bankruptcy protection in the United States, per Cirque's press release.
In an announcement Monday, the Montreal-based company blamed its bankruptcy on the "immense disruption and forced show closures as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic" and is aiming to restructure its debt with assistance from the Canadian government and numerous other private equity firms. In March, the company laid off more than 3500 employees constituting about 95 per cent of its workforce after 44 productions were cancelled due to social distancing and lockdown orders.
Cirque du Soleil's application for bankruptcy protection will be heard on Tuesday by the Superior Court of Quebec.
The company also said the artists and show staff of resident shows in Las Vegas and Orlando, which are expected to resume before the rest of its shows, would not be impacted by the layoffs.
Cirque entered into a so-called stalking horse purchase agreement with its shareholders - TPG, Shanghai-based Fosun International Ltd. and Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec - for a U.S. $300 million injection of liquidity.
It says the sponsors' bid includes an intent to rehire a substantial majority of the terminated employees, business conditions allowing, when its operations can resume.
Cirque is drowning in almost $1 billion in debt, according to multiple reports.
The company had to stop all performances in March, including six popular Las Vegas shows and global touring musicals Michael Jackson One and The Beatles Love.
Cirque du Soleil shows in Austin, Texas, Chicago, Houston, New Orleans, Salt Lake City, Montreal, Boston, Tel Aviv, Meloneras, Spain, Munich, Costa Mesa, Denver, and the Australian cities of Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth have also cancelled.