All performances of Cirque du Soleil’s first and only permanent show in China have been cancelled until further notice, citing the ongoing coronavirus outbreak in the country.
Chinese authorities have banned all indoor activities that gather more than 100 people in one place, in an effort to contain the virus.
“As a responsible actor, it’s the thing to do,” said Daniel Lamarre, the chief executive officer of Cirque du Soleil.
“It’s a preventative measure from the Chinese authorities and it’s important to collaborate with them.”
Launched last year, The Land of Fantasy shows are performed five days a week in Hangzhou, in the Zhejiang province.
“Hangzhou is far from the centre of the epidemic,” Lamarre said, “but in the current environment, it is better to be more careful than less.”
Hangzhou is located about 700 kilometres east of Wuhan, where the virus was first detected in December.
Lamarre said that no one who works for Cirque du Soleil has the symptoms of coronavirus, but the company has medical staff on-site as a precaution.
There are currently no plans for Cirque personnel to leave the city, but Lamarre said that “depending on the situation” over the next few days, that could change.
Lamarre said they hope the ban on indoor activities will be lifted soon, so the troupe can get back to performing.