Great Moscow Circus leaves international performers in limbo in Ballarat

General manager Shane Lennon said contractors, staff and performers had been left stranded by the liquidation of the Great Moscow Circus. Picture: Lachlan Bence.
General manager Shane Lennon said contractors, staff and performers had been left stranded by the liquidation of the Great Moscow Circus. Picture: Lachlan Bence.

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Thirteen international circus performers are stranded, cashless in Ballarat after the Great Moscow Circus went into liquidation this week. 

The circus was booked to perform at Ballarat Showgrounds for four nights, from Wednesday through to Saturday. 

Staff and contractors were told on Tuesday the company was going into voluntary administration, general manager Shane Lennon said.

Mr Lennon, who has been contracted by the Great Moscow Circus, said international performers were given paperwork to fill out for their entitlements and told to go to their consulate for the rest. 

“There are 13 who would possibly need to go home or have somewhere to go – it’s alright for all the Australian support crew and performers that have homes or relatives here in Australia but these guys don’t have any of that.

“They haven’t been told through any of the company directors what their entitlements are,” Mr Lennon, who himself has lost over $100,000, said. 

“The administrator said they’d have to wait … gave them the paperwork and then they were asking ‘what about our flights home, what about our immigration’ and they said you’ll have to go to your local consulate for that’ and just left them. That’s as far as it’s gone.”

Mr Lennon said his wife was providing “a bit of a soup kitchen” for employees and contractors to gather together for meals.

“My father and I own the caravans they’re staying in and we’ve allowed them to stay as long as they need to but there’s not much we can do for them because we’ve lost a lot of money as well.”