Ashton Entertainment Australia

About Us

Ashton Entertainment is a circus and performing arts company born from the family of the world renowned Ashton Circus. Founded by 5th generation Ashton, Jan Ashton-Rodriguez and her husband, internationally acclaimed former Spanish Circus star, Brasil Rodriguez, this is their extension of the family circus that they were born and bred into. They, together with their daughters, Chantel and Tamara along with grandson Remi, have travelled Australia for many, many years.

 The Ashton Circus Family are the oldest Circus family in Australia. We are proud of our history, and excited about carrying on this great tradition started so long ago.  Let us take you back to where it all started.

The story of The Ashton’s is very nearly as old as Australia it self, before Federation at least.

James Henry Ashton founded the first Australian Circus in the early 1800’s and was first licensed by an act of Parliament in 1851. For his whole life and for generations after, the Ashtons have visited both regional towns and big cities, bringing joy to the people of Australia for over 160 years. For generations, the Ashtons crossed flooded rivers, and deserts, drove through snow-covered mountains, fended off bushrangers, and even traversed where there were no roads to reach the communities who have loved and inspired our family of performers for generations.  People came from all around to enjoy Ashton Circus. In the 1800’s, Ned Kelly sometimes watched the show and even had tea with the performers after the show in gratitude. 

James Ashton was well renowned for his charity work and generosity, a tradition carried on to this day by his descendents. In 1996 Doug & Phyllis Ashton both received OAM's for their services to the entertainment industry and charities. Our family has performed throughout the generations, helping many associations to build, fund and deliver their causes.  We have also performed before royalty and been celebrated at the international Monte Carlo “Festival of Circus” by Prince Rainier himself.

The Ashton Family and our circus has grown and changed over 8 generations since James Henry Ashton stated his Circus.

Today, the 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th and 8th generation of  the Ashton family are still on tour. Operating 3 individual Circuses throughout Australia, each of which have grown from the same roots,  all still carrying on this great tradition started so long ago, all proud that we are still bringing affordable family entertainment to our fellow Australians.

These circuses are:

  • Ashton Entertainment by Jan Ashton-Rodriguez and family (daughter of Doug and Phyllis Ashton)
  • Circus Joseph Ashton by Joseph Ashton and family (Grandson of Doug and Phyllis Ashton );
  • Lorraine Ashton’s Classic Circus by Lorrain Ashton-Grant and family (Daughter of Doug and Phyllis Ashton)

We are enormously proud of our family, our history, and have maintained a fantastic library of images, newspaper clippings & magazine stories which you can share in the picture gallery <click here>