Over 5 million people have been forced to flee their homes in Ukraine since the war began.
Husbands, brothers and fathers all have had to say farewell to their families as they stay to help defend their country.
It’s been a very emotional and traumatic time for everyone involved with Circus Cortex.
Last year’s performance saw 70% of our cast being Ukrainian and most had planned to re-join us for this year's tour.
As soon as the news broke as to what was happening in Ukraine we immediately set up a group chat so we could all keep in contact with each other and to check in daily to make sure that everyone was safe, while we set plans in motion to try and get as many of our cast and their families out as soon as possible.
This is an ongoing task.
Thank you for your support.
Tetiana Lotiuk - From Zhytomyr
Tetiana was caught in Kharkiv when the war broke out, she was looking after our choreographer's dog and covering her classes.
She had a horrendous journey from Kharkiv to Hungary 2nd week into the War.
She is now safe in the UK with us.
Galina & Edurado - From Melitopol
Having managed to flee Ukraine and reach Hungary on the eve of war breaking out. They realised luck was most definitely on their side. They are t to have reached the UK safely as they now get the chance to entertain children young and old and to fix smiles on all our audiences faces.
Viktor Gorodetskiy, Yulia Gorodetska,
Valdis Gorodetskiy - From Mikolaev
This young circus family had to leave their home 3 weeks after the start of the war. They fled to Khmelnitskyy, staying with Viktor's parents who are also circus artists, before spending 2 very long months in Lviv.
They received their UK visas and Viktor has been given a special commission from the ministry of culture to leave Ukraine as an artiste and they arrived 2 days before our premiere show in Sheffield.
They are thankful to be back on tour with us and are looking for short term school placements in all the towns that we tour, so their young son can keep up with his schooling.
Yevhenia Honcharova - From Kiev
Yevhenia refused to leave behind her beloved sphinx cat 'Lexa to an unknown future, so she packed her and all her circus props up and escaped to Poland. Unable to take her cat on the plane with her, Yevhenia, her cat and all her props; got a lift with a humanitarian truck driver and they all arrived safely on the eve of opening day.
Svitlana Dvoyashkina - From Kharkiv
Svitlana left Kharkiv 4 days before the War broke out for a short term contract in Egypt.
She was working short term in 'Sharm El Shaikh' choreographing a show for a Resort.
She has received a UK Sponsor visa and has just arrived in the UK and we are thrilled to have her.
Lina Dolesco and Vlad Hrozov - From Odessa
Lina and Vlad left their home at the start of the War and fled to Canada to stay with Lina's brother.
They received their visas and have now joined us back on tour.
Kseniia Isaieva and Sergey Malinovskiy - From Lugansk & Kherson
They were both in Kherson when War broke out. Kseniia had to leave Sergey to come to the UK, and was extremely worried about leaving him and their beloved dog ICE' behind to face the uncertainty without her, Sergey was thankfully granted his special commission from the ministry of culture and he immediately packed up all his belongings as well as their beloved pooch'. All 3 are safe in the UK with Circus Cortex.
Mykhailo Linovetskyi & Dima Belokon
These 2 best mates were caught in Turkey and Poland when the war broke out. They arrived in the UK just before our opening day show. They are hoping to expand their unique talents and are looking for fellow BMX & Skateboard Pros in each town we tour, whether its to hang out or to enter completions. They just want to share their skills with other like minded souls.
Krylo Popazov - From Melitopol
Krylo fled his home town of Melitopol, journeyed across Russia and Europe to join us.
Krylo’s work as a technician is of great value to Circus Cortex, This is his first time with a travelling circus and his first time to the UK.
Marina Galanova - From Kharkiv
Marina was on a contract in Dubai when she heard the war had started. She arrived safely in UK and we are delighted to have her back with us.
Sergey Domoratskiy and Olena - In Lviv
Sergey and Olena had just got married before the War breakout. Their happiness short lived, they currently are unable to leave Ukraine due to Martial law. Sergey also recently broke his knee and required an operation. Thanks to all his friends donation, he is now able to pay for his knee operation and we all wish him the best and a very speedy recovery
Petro Horodytskyi - From Kharkiv
Petro left Kharkiv 2 weeks into the War.
He is now in Chernovtsi.
Currently helping children at a local circus school and performing for local refugees.
He is not able to leave Ukraine due to Martial law