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How much does a clown earn?

Leo Lobo | Circus Vagabunt

How much does a clown earn?

He’s 39 and was born in Osnabrück in Germany, the son of Portuguese emigrants. He calls himself Leo Lobo, but his real name is Sérgio Augusto. In the 1970s, his family emigrated to Germany. His father worked in the car industry, his mother as a cleaner. When he was six, he returned to Portugal. He lived with his uncle and aunt. He speaks and writes German very intuitively. He went back to Germany when he was 21 to train in circus arts – specialising in the educational/pedagogical side, at the school “Seifenblase” in Oldenburg, Lower Saxony.


Do you earn money to do circus, or do you do circus to earn money?

Neither one nor the other. My life has always been a colourful journey. I took part in a project called “Circo faz forte” (Circus makes you strong). In Germany, I discovered this art as an educational tool. And this opened doors for me. The training in Germany is free. It doesn’t cost anything. The aim of the system is for people/citizens to grow. I gained economic and emotional stability. Circus is a good pedagogical tool because it includes non-verbal communication: we have juggling, we have acrobatics, good group dynamics.

I like German people because they are free and open. Outside their own country, Portuguese people also acquire this sense of openness. I returned to Portugal three years ago to fulfil a number of dreams, like the “Talentejo” festival. Here you have to start a fiscal activity; you have to have receipts and expenses. I don’t know yet how I can grow. No one wants to invest in education, neither a parish council nor a municipality. Everything’s very bureaucratic. Yes, as a lifeguard, you can survive. But in areas such as ecology or education, it’s very difficult.


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