Saturday, September 05, 2020

Clown Alley Art: Les Francescos


Three of my favorite clowns, Les Francescos (Francois, Enrico, and Ernesto), as seen through the eyes of the talented artist, Elena Zaïka.

Friday, September 04, 2020

Acrobuffos: Seth Bloom and Christina Gelsone

From the Acrobuffos website:

Seth Bloom and Christina Gelsone met at a circus in Afghanistan, became engaged while street performing in Scotland, married in China, and occasionally go home to New York City.

Since 2005, they have created seven shows together, competed in international circus festivals, performed in over 25 countries, headlined at the Big Apple Circus, and were featured on a postage stamp.
Christina is a former ballerina who graduated from Princeton to become a clown; Seth is a former juggler who graduated from three clown schools, including an MFA in physical theater.

 Madame & Monsieur on Big Apple Circus
Air Play

Thursday, September 03, 2020

Clyde Beatty Cole Bros. Clowns 1987

Robert Grissetti, David Gerard, Geoff Cobb, and Thomas Caguin, four of the 1987 Beatty Cole clowns.
Robert, Geoff, and Thomas were all fresh out of the Clown College class of 1986.
David had spent a year on the Ringling Red Unit after graduating from Clown College in 1980, and later worked for Clyde Beatty and other shows.

Blue Unit Clowns on Good Morning America 2001

David Solove, Marni Sussman, Todd Zimmerman and the rest of Clown Alley provide a backstage look at what it's like being a Ringling clown.

Tuesday, September 01, 2020

Les Fratellini 1948

François and Albert Fratellini with Gabriel Geretti performing a clown entrée at the Cirque D’Hiver Bouglione in Paris.


Carmelo, aka Jorge Rodrigo Celedon Bustamante (now you know why he goes by Carmelo) is a very funny and talented Chilean clown whom Ryan and I performed with on Circo Hermanos Vazquez.
It is rare to see a drunk act in American circuses, but Carmelo would consistently bring the house down on Vazquez. Many copycat acts sprung up after his success in Latin American circuses.

Photo credit: Rick Purdue
Photo credit: Rick Purdue

Monday, August 31, 2020

Boxing Gag: Kelly Miller Circus 1996

Darren Burrell, Tom "Popcorn" Sink, and Lem Fillyaw performing the Boxing Gag on the 1996 edition of the Kelly Miller Circus.

Darren aka Burl and Lem are both Clown College graduates: Lem in 1993 and Burl in 1995. Popcorn was a clown on several different mud shows for many years.

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Rose Hanlon: Ringling Early 1950s

Rose Hanlon, of the Hanlon-Lees family, one of the first women clowns with Ringling. 
The first two photos are from the Milner Circus Collection. All other photos are from the ICHOF archives.