The Yellow Wiggle is back! The original Yellow Wiggle was should say, Greg Page, who bowed out suddenly due to illness five years ago. At the time Page was suffering from fainting spells and chronic fatigue, and was later diagnosed with dysautonomia which left him unable to perform or walk without the aid of a cane.
Since then back-up dancer Sam Moran has filled his shoes and assumed the role of the yellow Wiggle. But the recession in the US has taken a bite out of DVD and CD sales, and a series of bad investments by Page are said to be the real reason for his surprise comeback.
When Page left the group he was paid out nearly $20 million in a settlement, which included royalties, but he is now struggling financially as his investments were hit hard by the GFC. The Wiggles are estimated to have earned $28.2 million last year according the the Business Review Weekly.
Industry insiders have revealed that Moran was employed as basically a stand-in on a $200,000-a-year contract and does not benefit from any of the royalties the other original members enjoy. They also point out that he was often ostracised by the other members.
“This takes me full circle. I’m excited to be back with my friends and to be entertaining our incredible fans again,” Page said in a prepared statement. “I didn’t get a chance to say farewell last time, so this is an opportunity I couldn’t refuse. I’m feeling great and looking forward to doing what I love.”
Although Moran will be dumped immediately he’s been given access to the group’s Hot Potato Studios so he can pursue other musical work, said Wiggles manager Paul Field. “We thank Sam for his wonderful contribution to the group for the past five years. He joined at a difficult time for Greg and the group, and we’re so grateful for all he has done.”
In a statement prepared by Moran he diplomatically said “I am very proud of my five years as the Yellow Wiggle and the group’s continued success with me as their lead singer. I have enjoyed every minute of my nine years touring with the group, but I now look forward to new opportunities and more time spent with my wife and two- year-old daughter.”
Page’s work as the yellow Wiggle begins almost immediately with new work set to begin on new CD, DVD and television content. Local and international tours are also scheduled with Australia in March and later this year the UK and US.