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Umberto “Antonet” Guillaume (1872-1935)

Umberto "Antonet" Guillaume
Born in Brescia, Italy, Antonet was the son of a famous family of Italian clowns. He followed in Footit’s tradition as an “authoritarian” whiteface clown. George Speaight credits Antonet with introducing the loose spangled dress, with calf-length trousers that became associated with the European whiteface clown. Antonet first...
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Frank “Slivers” Oakley

Frank "Slivers" Oakley in his baseball skit
Frank Oakley, aka. Slivers, 1871-1916 Frank Oakley, also known as Slivers (1871–1916) was the most popular circus clown of his generation. Born in Sweden, both of Oakley’s parents were concert singers. At the age of 14 he began to practice as a contortionist and at 16 he joined...
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Dimitri (1935 – )

Dimitri
Dimitri was born in Ascona, Switzerland (1935). When he was seven years old he decided he wanted to become a clown. After graduating from school, Dimitri became an apprentice potter while studying music and theater. He went to Paris to study under Etienne Decrox, then Marcel Marceau. In...
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Swede Johnson

Swede Johnson was born Carl Gehlert Johansen in Ribe, Denmark in 1903. Swede was a fourth generation circus performer, and traveled with his family in their own circus throughout the Scandinavian countries while growing up. At the age of 15, he went to work in the Hagenbeck Zoo...
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Duane Thorpe, Uncle Soapy, whiteface circus clown

Duane Thorpe, aka. Uncle Soapy
Duane “Uncle Soapy” Thorpe (1924 – 1995) Inducted into the 2000 Clown Hall of Fame. Duane “Uncle Soapy” Thorpe is one of the few clowns to have had a successful career while working for only one circus. (Although Duane was in his fair share of soap gags through...
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Frankie Saluto – famous circus clown

Frankie Saluto
FRANKIE SALUTO (1906 – 1982) Inducted into the 1991 Clown Hall of Fame Frankie Saluto was short in stature, but quickly became big in clowning circles. He began clowning in 1928 and shortly afterwards joined the Ringling Brothers Circus. He became known as the whiteface dwarf with the...
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Paul Jung, famous producing circus clown

Color photo of Paul Jung - face
Paul Jung (1901 – April 21, 1965) Inducted into the Clown Hall of Fame in 1992. Paul Jung way born in Dayton, Ohio in 1901 to Paul and Mary Young, who were themselves professional entertainers. As a youngster Paul Jung first performed in a vaudeville acrobatic act with...
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Paul Fratellini, of the famous Fratellini clown trio

Paul Fratellini
Paul Fratellini (1877 – 1940) The Fratellini’s were a smoothly functioning trio whose characters provided effective contrasts: Francois, the elegant one (the whiteface); Albert, the grotesque, and Paul halfway between them, sometimes taking one brother’s side, sometimes the other’s. (Albert was inducted into the Clown Hall of Fame...
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Francois Fratellini, famous white face clown

Francois Fratellini
Francois Fratellini (1879 – 1951) The Fratellini’s were a smoothly functioning trio whose characters provided effective contrasts: Francois, the elegant white face clown; Albert Fratellini, the grotesque (comedy) whiteface, and Paul Fratellini half-way between them, sometimes taking one brother’s side, sometimes the other’s. (Albert Fratellini was inducted into...
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