Circus twins could be Germany-bound

The Atherton twins in the Cirque du Soleil production Paramour
The Atherton twins in the Cirque du Soleil production Paramour

Wigan identical twins who perform spectacular routines with a world-famous circus could be crossing continents again.

Andrew and Kevin Atherton, who grew up in Barnsley Street, Gidlow, and as teen gymnasts represented their country at the Commonwealth Games, have been essential parts of the internationally renowned Cirque du Soleil for years now.

Their aerial gymnastics display in the show Paramour was voted the second best Broadway moment of 2016 and it has been selling out at the huge Lyric Theatre.

But the production is set to end in April after Cirque was reputedly paid up to £25m to vacate the venue for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child!

The likeliest scenario now is that the show will decamp to Hamburg in Germany.

But this doesn’t faze the 41-year-old brothers, even though one of them now has a young family in tow.

They are well used to travelling the world and don’t feel that they have deep roots anywhere.

Andrew’s wife Gasya is a hand-balancer and trapeze artist in the Cirque and while at less than two years old, son Kaysen is a little young to show much interest yet, four-year-old daughter Kamali is already showing she might be following in her parents’ footsteps and has taken up ballet, tap and taekwando!

Kevin is a free agent at present, after getting divorced, but is now going for a baby through surrogacy and hoping to be a dad by next year. He is equally happy to travel.

Andrew said: “We thought we would be at The Lyric with Paramour for a good while longer than 12 months, but that’s not a great problem. We are quite used to moving around.

“They may find another theatre on Broadway after Paramour closes there on April 16 but that will be an extra show and so it looks like we will be heading to Germany.

“That would be later in the year though and we might have six months performing in Mexico before then.

“I can’t see myself settling down - although we may do once the children want it, although at present it’s OK - each time we move we find a better school. I’m not sure what home is now. We lived in Vegas for two years and then Los Angeles. It’s four years since I was last in Wigan. Our parents (Eric and Audrey) now live in Spain and they come over to stay and see the shows and our sister (Suzanne Lowther) lives in Wakefield.

“But we do still have Wigan connections. We have been quite canny with our money over the years and have invested in a lot of real estate all over the world. I’ve actually got two houses in Abram and one in Goose Green.

“We don’t need to work but I could see us doing another 10 years yet. We have kept ourselves very fit and healthy.”