One of the world’s leading circus companies is pleading for the state premier to open the borders, with the crew stuck in Queensland.
One of the world’s leading circus companies is pleading for the state premier to open the borders, with the crew stuck in Queensland.

Circus pleads for borders to open

The Great Moscow Circus is stuck on the Gold Coast unable to continue its tour until interstate travel is back on again.

The renowned circus, which has toured Australia every three to five years since 1965, has set up camp for the foreseeable at Yatala.

The tour premiered in Wollongong in May 2017 and had visited metropolitan and regional locations in every state before coming to a halt in February 2020 due to COVID-19.

Marketing manager Mark Edgely said the crew were "very lucky" to be close to the Gold Coast when they had to stop touring.

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Hand balancer Ebony Marklewfine tunes her act. Picture Glenn Hampson
Hand balancer Ebony Marklewfine tunes her act. Picture Glenn Hampson

"Our last show was in February at North Lakes near Brisbane, so we made our way to the Gold Coast when we could no longer travel," he said. "The Weber family who are a part of our team, luckily had a property we could set up at.

"If we were stuck in Western Australia or somewhere, it would have been a logistical nightmare."

 

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Mr Edgely has been living with his wife and five-year-old son in a caravan at the property, and he said a shed owned by the Webers is storing the show's equipment.

"Everything we have from seating to tents are being stored there," he said.

"We are also using the shed to keep the performers healthy and on top of their skills.

"There are poles, trampolines and lots of the performers' props set up and everyone is practising when they can.

Left to right, Andrii Dudkin, Tianni Weber, 6 year old motorbike guru Cruz Weber, Hand balancer Ebony Marklew, Tanika Weber and Heorhii Mykhailenko. Picture Glenn Hampson
Left to right, Andrii Dudkin, Tianni Weber, 6 year old motorbike guru Cruz Weber, Hand balancer Ebony Marklew, Tanika Weber and Heorhii Mykhailenko. Picture Glenn Hampson

"We are all ready to go, we have our COVIDSafe plan in place and the performers are ready, we just need governments to allow travel."

The circus aims to restart its tour around Christmas at Toowoomba but are limited on locations.

The 25 staff and performers are from all over the world and Mr Edgely said finances had been a battle since COVID-19 stopped shows.

"The Australian Government has given us some support with things like JobKeeper, and for those who couldn't access it, the Red Cross have helped a lot, allowing people to access money from their super and things like that," he said.

"For some of the international people, it's been tough being stuck in a different country.

"They're going from having an income to relying on very little but they're surviving."

kyle.wisniewski@news.com.au

 

Originally published as 'Show must go on': Circus stuck on Coast pleads for borders to open



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