The coronavirus cluster linked to TV show The Masked Singer has grown to 16 after seven more people connected to the set tested positive.
Production was shut down on Saturday when nine people tested positive for the deadly virus.
About 250 studio crew and on-screen talent have been made to self-isolate – including host Osher Günsberg and judges Dannii Minogue, Dave Hughes, Urzila Carlson and Jackie ‘O’ Henderson.
The COVID-19 bombshell came on the night of the show’s grand final being filmed.
The show’s set is in Melbourne, which is at the centre of Australia’s coronavirus second wave.
‘Production on The Masked Singer has been immediately suspended as a result of several crew members receiving a positive test result for COVID-19,’ Network Ten said in a statement.
‘The health and safety of the community, and our staff and production partners is our number one priority.
‘The entire production team, including the masked singers, the host and panellists are now in self-isolation. They are all being monitored closely and are in constant contact with medical authorities.
‘Network 10 is working closely with the Victorian Government and the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services. Network 10 is providing all crew with all the support and assistance possible.’
One dancer came to the set ill on Friday and was told by producers to go home, the Sunday Herald Sun reported.
Since then another 15 individuals have now contracted COVID-19.
With no studio audience this season because of coronavirus, the show has instead used dancers to perform in the forefront as the stars perform.
The outbreak has also affected Channel Nine’s Millionaire Hot Seat hosted by Eddie McGuire.
The game show is filmed at the same Docklands studio has been forced to shut down production.
Premier Daniels defended the Victorian government’s decision to grant The Masked Singer an exemption to continue filming during the city’s Stage 4 lockdown.
‘[The outbreak] does make the point that this is a widely infectious virus,’ Premier Daniel Andrews said on Sunday.
‘Even if you’ve got the very best processes in place you’ll see positive cases.’
The Masked Singer is Channel Ten’s addictive series that sees the judges and the public at home taking wild guesses at the identities behind the masks.
So far, the stars that have been unmasked are Mark Philippoussis as The Echidna, Michael Bevan as Hammerhead, Christine Anu as Goldfish and Katie Noonan as The Sloth.
Still to have their identities revealed are Dragonfly, Frillneck, Wizard, Cactus, Queen, Bushranger, Puppet and Kitten.