From Cirque to sinks: Acrobat turns to plumbing to make a living during pandemic

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) – The ripple effect of the pandemic persists as many are unemployed or find other jobs, including a Cirque du Soleil performer who is now a plumber.

Roman Polishchuk says after 23 years and over 6,500 performances it is time to take a step back.

Today he works at Goettle Air Conditioning and Plumbing.

“I was nervous at first, but I’m doing the same thing as before, but with a different job,” said Polishchuk. “It still makes me happy.”

It’s been almost a year since Polishchuk took the stage, but his talent as a performer is hard to ignore when fixing broken pipes.

He joined Cirque du Soleil 23 years ago and has traveled the world. He has received some of the highest honors in his field and has countless stories about his career.

His life took a sudden turn when the pandemic forced everything to close.

“We did the show and the next day they told us that the show would be canceled for that day. We asked why and they said because of the pandemic and all shows around the world have been canceled, ”said Polishchuk. “We stood by for a couple of days before they said, ‘I’m sorry you all have to go home.'”

Without a job, says Polishchuk, a friend of an air conditioning and sanitation company made contact.

“I feel good. I work and study,” said Polishchuk. “It’s something new in my life, so it’s good for me.”

His experience on stage, including his participation in “Viva Elvis”, allows him to be more flexible at work and to spend more time with family.

“I want to have dinner with my family, be at school with my children and pick them up,” said Polishchuk. “If you work in the circus, you come home late at night.”

Polishchuk said he is still doing his best to stay active, but by age 48, many of his priorities have changed.

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