Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Cirque du Soleil Performers on P-1 Visas Impacted by COVID-19 Pandemic

 The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc across the world and all industries are impacted.  The circus industry is no exception.  A recent article in the Las Vegas Review-Journal describes the difficulties faced by Las Vegas-based Cirque du Soleil performers, many of whom are in the country on P-1 visas, as athletes who are part of a group or team that performs at an internationally recognized level of performance.  

The article describes how the Las Vegas entertainment industry shut down operations in mid-March due to the pandemic.  While the article is not specific, its descriptions of the financial struggles suffered by the performers suggests that Cirque du Soleil furloughed or terminated its employees.

Since continued maintenance of P-1 visa status is tied to ongoing employment (and timely payment), some of the foreign national performers in the troupe were forced to leave the country.  At this point, P-1 athletes impacted by the pandemic are looking towards its quick resolution just like everyone else:

For now, the question remains: When will Cirque du Soleil return and who will operate the circus extravaganza in a new post-COVID-19 world?

“Your guess is as good as mine,” Nickel said.
In their case, resolution of the COVID-19 crisis is important not just for health reasons but also to safeguard their ability to stay and work in the country.

No comments:

Post a Comment