OSLO, Oct. 19 (Xinhua) -- Hospital clowns, who have spread lots of joy for Norwegian children who need treatment, have been badly influenced by the latest fright trend that has hit both the United States and Norway, newspaper Aftenposten reported on Wednesday.
There are about 10,000 Norwegian children who have been visited by Hospital Clowns organization every year in the last 15 years and they make it easier for the kids to deal with receiving vaccine or removing bandage.
The phenomenon known internationally as "killer clown" involves smiling clowns who threaten innocent people with weapons, such as an axe or a bat. According to the report, the fear of the "killer clown" has led to many cancelled tickets for the annual performance in Norwegian hospitals throughout the country.
"We see that there are many have become skeptical regarding buying tickets. Before the weekend, we had experienced cancellations of the performances," Kristin Zachariassen, leader and press officer of the Hospital Clowns organization, said. "The parents are afraid that the children would be scared of the clowns in the performance," she said.
There are 30 professional hospital clowns who are to perform in a parade from Oslo city center to the Oslo University Hospital on Friday. Zachariassen, however, thinks that it is not the best time to gather the clowns.
"We will cancel the parade, if we do not find the way to turn this into something positive," she said.
Elisabeth Helland Larsen, technical advisor of the organization, expressed doubt that children in hospitals would connect their clowns to the "killer clowns."
"They are professional actors and are educated to communicate and meet the patients," she said, adding that their clowns have only "a small red nose and little make-up" and use neither wigs nor masks.
"A full coverage mask is extremely scary for children, whether we talk about Santa Claus or Mickey Mouse. We would like to recommend everyone who has developed fear of clowns to come and see our performance. It is about hospital clown entertainment, fantasy, artistic interpretation of our profession. It is a fun-filled performance for children who are five or more years old," Larsen said.