Two brave circus artists have returned to the big top and are performing in Glasgow after escaping the war in Ukraine on foot.

Married Circus Extreme performers Henry Ayala, 42, and Tatiana Kundyk, 37, and their two-year-old son, Leonardo, were with family on the outskirts of Kyiv when the war on Ukraine broke out.

Mr Ayala, known as Henry the Prince of Clowns, is the face of Circus Extreme and is world-renowned for his work as both a clown and a tightrope artist.

Ms Kundyk, from Ukraine, has been on numerous shows akin to Britain’s Got Talent in multiple countries for her extraordinary balancing work on a slack wire.

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The young family were visiting Ms Kundyk’s parents on the outskirts of Kyiv in February when the war on Ukraine broke out in the dead of night.

Ms Kundyk and Mr Ayala recounted the harrowing events that lead them to flee the country on foot with their infant son.

Ms Kundyk told The Glasgow Times: “We were having a beautiful dinner, a beautiful night, sleeping nice and tight, then at five o’clock in the morning we were woken up to missiles and explosions.

“And my mother knocked my door and she said, ‘you have to leave the war has started.’

“We started to panic and started packing. The roads and everything were completely blocked, completely.

“People were panicking, everybody was leaving Kyiv.”

Mr Ayola added: “We went away that night and there was too much traffic, so we managed to turn back home and get ourselves a little bit more organised.

“We just left in a panic, you know.”

Confused by the chaos around them, Mr Ayola and Ms Kundyk tried to find out what was happening before deciding again that they had to leave Ukraine.

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The couple drove as far as they could from Kyiv towards Poland, sometimes having to drive the wrong way on streets or cut through fields until they couldn’t drive any closer.

Mr Ayola said: “It was freezing cold.”

Ms Kundyk added: “There was a queue of cars, I think a 12km queue of cars to the border.

“So my nephew, he dropped us as close as he could but the rest of the way we just had to walk.

“We crossed the border with Poland by foot, and when we crossed it was already midnight and we didn’t know where we were going.”

They had to wait four hours to cross the border in the cold carrying their son. Their phones had run out of battery and their credit cards had been stopped.

Mr Ayola and Ms Kundyk were driven to Warsaw by volunteers where they stayed for 10 days awaiting a UK visa.

After the harrowing ordeal the talented pair are back to delighting audiences with their breathtaking circus routines and will be performing in Glasgow until August 14.

The performers are delighted to be in Scotland but are still very worried about their family members who stayed in Ukraine.

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Ms Kundyk said: “I see Ukrainian flags everywhere and it’s so nice, like, it’s so nice.

“This feeling of support, and people all over the world support you, and understand, and share the pain, it’s really important.”

Circus Extreme is an awe-inspiring show for all ages that merges styles of circus performance from extreme stunts to classic clowning around.

Acts include an award-winning high-wire act by the Ayala Troupe, freestyle motocross and globe of death stunt riding performances, world record juggling, death defying aerial stunts and a sci-fi inspired aerial hoop show.

Mr Ayola said: “Glasgow, we think it’s a beautiful big city.

“We’re here for two more weeks, and we’re just waiting to entertain you guys, to come over and bring happiness to the Glasgow people and the Glasgow audience.

“The weather is not so great outside, but it’s always great inside the circus tent.”

He added: “If you haven’t seen the circus before, well definitely, this is the circus you should come and see for the first time because it’s the best circus show.

“It’s a new style of show, so it’s great, it’s for everybody really, all ages.”

Circus Extreme prides itself on having something for everyone.

The show is running both afternoon and evening shows within a big top in the Silverburn shopping centre car park.

The last date in Glasgow is August 14 before the circus continues on its travels.