The Circus in Winter: by Cathy Day

The Circus in Winter: by Cathy Day

From 1884 to 1939, the Great Porter Circus makes the unlikely choice to winter in an Indiana town called Lima, a place that feels as classic as Sherwood Anderson’s Winesburg, Ohio, and as wondrous as a first trip to the Big Top. In Lima an elephant can change...
Annie Fratellini

Annie Fratellini

Circus is one of the oldest and most popular art forms and during the last hundred years or so, it has also helped to revolutionise “straight” theatre by bringing back “theatre in the round” and introducing clown and music-hall techniques to...
The Circus in Winter: by Cathy Day

Achille Zavatta

Born May 6, 1915, deceased November 16, 1993. He was a French clown, an artist and circus operator, born in La Goulette, Tunisia. The son of Federico Zavatta, a circus owner from a family of Italian fairground artists, his mother was Emma Tholomet, and both of...
The Circus in Winter: by Cathy Day

Dimitri the Clown

18.9.1935 at 09.30 a.m. Dimitri was born in Ascona, Vicolo Ghiriglione (opposite the theatre of puppeteers which later will be his first stage), son of the sculptor and architect Werner Jakob Müller and the handweaver and artisan Maja, born Tschirren. Due to...
Yuri Nikulin

Yuri Nikulin

From your feedback it looks like you enjoyed our newsletters about Jacko Fossett, so here’s another short biography of another famous clown this time far from Manchester. We head to Russia and the fantastic Yuri Nikulin....
The History of Belle-Vue

The History of Belle-Vue

For nearly 150 years, Belle-Vue Zoological Gardens was one of the most continuously successful entertainment destinations in the United Kingdom. Founded in 1836 by John Jennison and by 1856 the collection included monkeys, kangaroos, rhinos, lions and bears, and even...
Evetta, The Lady Clown

Evetta, The Lady Clown

The Barnum & Bailey show created quite a stir during the 1895 season with Josephine Mathews (also sometimes labeled as Williams in the press) aka Evetta, The Lady Clown. That season Barnum & Bailey had a strong female presence and the posters also announced a...
William Kempe, The Dancing Clown

William Kempe, The Dancing Clown

On the 8th March 1600, a noisy and excited crowd of spectators gathered to witness the final stage of a remarkable event, (which later became known as the “9 Day Wonder”) an event that had long been anticipated and had captured the imagination of a city. The...
April Fools

April Fools

Did you know when it comes to our unofficial holidays, April Fools’ Day is one of the weirder ones.? It’s a folk holiday of pranks and mild humiliations, in which children get to pull one over on their parents or teachers, and vice-versa; in which media outlets can...
Commedia dell’ Arte

Commedia dell’ Arte

The 25th February is International Commedia dell’ Arte Day so here’s a bit of history and information on a street art form that definateley influenced the world of Clown. A major landmark in theatre history occurred in Padua, Italy, on February 25, 1545, when Ser...
A Chip Off The Old Block

A Chip Off The Old Block

One of our newest Junior members had her first bookings recently, Millie is the daughter of our  PRO Rob Bowker and has decided of her own accord to start clowning after seeing how much fun her Dad has at work. Both Rob and Millie were booked to work the parade...
The story of Charlie Cairoli

The story of Charlie Cairoli

“39 years under the tower”, the book!

 You’ll be pleased to know, after 26 years of research, we are now almost ready to publish. You may be aware I am writing the book with Steve Richley, Steve has written several very good circus books, including the posters...
Greetings from Holly Stoppit

Greetings from Holly Stoppit

Greetings from Holly Stoppit, Clown in Residence at Bristol Museum Hello Clowns and friends of clowns! I’d like to share with you a little bit about my world and what I’m about to get up to inside Clowns: the Eggshibition at Bristol Museum. If you...