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$13 million to bring Circus Oz Home to Collingwood

$13 million to bring Circus Oz Home to Collingwood
October 11, 2010

Australia's most famous circus will stay in Victoria and return to its original home in Collingwood if the Brumby Labor Government is re-elected.

Victorian Minister for the Arts Peter Batchelor has announced a $13 million State election commitment to help Circus Oz establish new headquarters at the former Northern Metropolitan College of TAFE in Johnston Street, Collingwood.

Minister Batchelor stated that "this funding commitment will ensure that under a re-elected Labor Government our world-renowned international circus company remains based here in Victoria, and that the job opportunities for the circus and entertainment workers also stay here.

"Circus Oz employs around 100 full-time and casual staff and our support will ensure some of the countryâs best performers and most skilled technicians remain based in Victoria.

"This commitment will also ensure the companyâs contribution to Melbourneâs vibrant physical theatre community continues and, with their new and improved space, their community and outreach programs can be significantly expanded."

In addition to $3 million for planning and design development announced in the last Victorian State Budget, the new commitments include:

• $10 million to kick-start site remediation, the refurbishment of the eastern wing of the three-storey Art Deco building on Johnston Street and the construction of new Big Top-sized rehearsal facilities at the rear of this building; and
•  The relevant part of the site provided under a 25-year peppercorn lease agreement with site owners Skills Victoria.

Minister Bachelor added that "these new headquarters will bring the company back to the suburb where it all began and cement Melbourne as home to Australiaâs most famous circus..

"This new state-of-the-art headquarters will provide training, rehearsal, storage and administration facilities for the Circus."

Minister Batchelor said Circus Oz was Australiaâs premier circus and it had delivered its distinct Australian style and humour to more than two million people across 26 countries and five continents.


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