According to, long-running rock publication Circus has 
closed its doors. Circus Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Gerald 
Rothberg has sent the following magazine-closure e-mail to the 
publication's contributors:

"It is with sadness and a deep sense of loss that I must inform you 
that I've experienced great financial loss, which includes Circus 
magazine. Over the last year, I've tried my best to hold on to 
Circus mag, selling all my personal possessions, including my home, 
pumping the money into the mag. And I've lost all. I've held off 
contacting people because of the shame and humiliation I've 
experienced. I'm broke. I feel like Humpty Dumpty who had a great 

"Circus magazine is in foreclosure. Will the magazine be 
resurrected? I don't know. If it will appear on the newsstands 
again, we'll find out. Let me say this now, I appreciate and I am 
grateful your contributions all these years and wish all my 
freelance contributors the best of health and success."

According to, Rothberg started Circus in 1966 under 
the title Hullabaloo. In the almost 40 years since, Circus has been 
many different kinds of music publication. It started out as a 
general interest rock magazine, running stories on classic rockers 
such as the DOORS, GENESIS, and GRAND FUNK RAILROAD. Later, Rothberg 
realized that his target audience — teen boys — loved to read about 
their favorite rock stars over and over, month after month. So when 
a band like KISS hit, they were one of Circus's biggest cover stars. 
Circus covered all kinds of rock and pop music but always featured a 
large number of heavy metal and hard rock bands in its pages.

Following an unpopular move to a pop culture weekly in the mold of 
People in the late '70s, Rothberg went back to a monthly format and 
started to get back to the hard rock and heavy metal stars that made 
his magazine sales soar. Rothberg's lean toward those kind of acts 
paid off big time in the '80s when the hair metal explosion hit. 
Month in and month out, it was DEF LEPPARD, VAN HALEN, and BON JOVI 
on the covers. The hair metal years in the '80s were Rothberg's most 
profitable for Circus. When grunge hit in the '90s, Circus got 
confused and lost its focus (even putting rappers ARRESTED 
DEVELOPMENT on the cover one month — and getting tons of hate mail 
in the process). 

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