Welcome to Famous Clowns

Welcome to FamousClowns.org, a website dedicated to the history and performance of clowning. Famous Clowns is run by Tom Raymond, who performs as a professional clown as Raynbow the Clown in Madison, Wisconsin, U.S.A.

What can you do here? There’s a free tutorial on starting clowning, articles on topics such as the Clown Commandments, biographies of famous clowns(including Charlie Chaplin, Red Skelton, Bob Bell, WGN-TV’s Bozo the Clown, Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, Emmett Kelly,Bob Keeshan,The Marx Brothers, The Three Stooges, and many others), reviews of books and movies on clowning, and much more.

Circus Directory. We are listed under Clowning category

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Staff make up demonstration - after. Back row: Kenny Ahern, Brenda Ahern (yes, they're related -- happily married). Front row: Betty Cash/Peewee, Linda Batdorf/Spin, Jim Howle/Jim

Clowning tutorial

Do you want to be a clown? Do you want to know  how? Here’s a series of tutorials on how to do that: (more…)

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Lou Jacobs circus poster - Barnum and Bailey Circus

list of Famous Clowns of the circus, stage, screen and television

Famous Clowns in history

Much of the information presented herein is borrowed shamelessly from the Clown Hall of Fame.  Much thanks to them. If you’re ever in the neighborhood, drop by – you won’t be disappointed.A listing of some of the famous clowns of history. If you don’t see someone listed that you think is deserving, please add a note in the comments, or email us. (more…)

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Jerry Lewis as The Nutty Professor

Jerry Lewis biography – hey, lady!

Jerry Lewis (March 16, 1926 – August 20, 2017)

Jerry Lewis, world-famous clown of stage, screen, television, and radio, is now best known for the annual Jerry Lewis Labor Day Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) Telethon.
his annual charity telethons for the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA).
Jerry Lewis was born Joseph Levitch on March 16, 1926, in Newark, New Jersey to a Jewish American family (more…)

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George Fox

A History of Clowns

(thanks to Bruce “Charlie” Johnson and The Clown Hall of Fame)


The art of clowning has existed for thousands of years. A pygmy clown performed as a jester in the court of Pharaoh Dadkeri-Assi during Egypt’s Fifth Dynasty about 2500 B.C. Court jesters have performed in China since 1818 B.C. Throughout history most cultures have had clowns. (more…)

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Lucille Ball Specials: Lucy Moves to NBC

Lucy moves to NBC

Lucille Ball Specials: Lucy Moves to NBC

Editorial review of Lucy Moves to NBC, courtesy of Amazon.com

After three decades of starring in a quartet of top-rated comedy series hits (I Love Lucy, The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, The Lucy Show and Here s Lucy) on CBS-TV, Emmy awarded comedienne Lucille Ball comes out of retirement and teams with NBC. She s greeted by the network s biggest stars such as her old friend Bob Hope, The Tonight Show host Johnny Carson, Quincy star Jack Klugman and Diff’rent Strokes actor Gary Coleman, who portrays the network president. Film great Gene Kelly and Lucy s longtime TV boss Gale Gordon round out the cast.

Dancing legend Donald O Connor and actress Gloria DeHaven are seen in the special s final segment, a separate musical-comedy presentation intended as a TV series pilot. Fans will also enjoy appearances by longtime Lucy friends and colleagues Robert Alda, Ruta Lee and Doris Singleton.

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Love, Lucy by Lucille Ball - the one and only autobiography - The New York Times bestseller - "The #1 Greatest TV Star of all time" - TV Guide

Love, Lucy by Lucille Ball

Editorial review of Love, Lucy courtesy of Amazon.com

Although Lucille Ball died in 1989, this autobiography written prior to 1964 has only recently been discovered among her papers. She describes a childhood deeply affected by her father’s death and her mother’s withdrawal from her life. Raised by her grandparents, Ball craved attention and developed a tempestuous, vivacious, fiery, and yet insecure personality that would later lead her to comic stardom. It took years of working from the bottom of show business before she became a television hit, with the help of her husband, co-star, and business partner, former Cuban bandleader Desi Arnaz. Ball abandoned the book for fear of hurting Arnaz, although she gives him credit for the tremendous success she enjoyed with I Love Lucy.

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Jerry Lewis in clown makeup

What is there not to like about Jerry Lewis?

Editor’s note: from an answer that I posted on Quora, regarding Jerry Lewis.

Well, it frankly depends. Like most of us, Jerry Lewis had a public life, and private life. In his public life:

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Wrong Again (1929), starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy

Wrong Again

Wrong Again (1929), starring Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy

Synopsis of Wrong Again

In Wrong Again, the boys mistake a horse named Blue Boy for the painting named Blue Boy. And try to return the stolen Blue Boy for the reward …

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Battling Butler (1926) starring Buster Keaton, Sally O'Neil, Francis McDonald

Battling Butler

Battling Butler (1926) starring Buster Keaton, Sally O’Neil, Francis McDonald


Buster Keaton remarked that Battling Butler was his favorite of all his films. Based on a Broadway play, the story revolves around a case of mistaken identity between two Alfred Butlers. One is an effete millionaire (Keaton), the other the heavyweight champion of the world (Francis McDonald). Coincidence brings them to the same backwoods Kentucky neighborhood, where Keaton finds love with a mountain girl. But not before antagonizing Butler-the-brute into a Madison Square Garden grudge match.

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National Clown Week 2019 day 7

Ringling Brothers clowns in the 1970's
Ringling Brothers clowns in the 1970’s

Today is the last day of National Clown Week – but it’s not over! Every day is an opportunity to help people smile so … bump a nose!

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National Clown Week 2019 – day 4

National Clown Week 2019 day 4 - Chico Marx, Groucho Marx, Harpo Marx, Zeppo Marx, 1930
For Day 4 of National Clown Week, what better than the four funny Marx Brothers? Go out and make somebody smile today!
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National Clown Week 2019 day 3

For Day 3 of National Clown Week - what's better than the three Fratellini Brothers?
For Day 3 of National Clown Week – what’s better than the three Fratellini Brothers?

Go out & bump a nose! Make somebody smile today …
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Clown Week 2019 day 2

Joey D'Auria as WGN-TV's 2nd Bozo the Clown, with his marching staff
Joey D’Auria as WGN-TV’s 2nd Bozo the Clown, with his marching staff

Clown Week day 2 – let’s take a moment to share a smile. The Good Lord knows, people can use it.

Bump a nose!

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Lucy Vitameatavegamin Animated Doll plus DVD

Lucy Vitameatavegamin Animated Doll

Product Description of Lucy Vitameatavegamin Animated Doll plus DVD

Lucy Vitameatavegamin Animated Doll plus DVD

This doll measures approximately 10 inches wide and 14 inches tall.  Lucy re-enacts her commericial for Vitameatavegamin from I Love Lucy Episode 30.  Her head, arm, and body move to animate this classic scene.  DVD of episode 30 and the classic scene are included.  Requires 120V AC adapter or 4 AA batteries (not included)

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